tv The Atlantic Hosts Infrastucture Conversations CSPAN January 7, 2019 8:32am-11:46am EST
>> today, former diplomats and defense officials discussed efforts to modernize nuclear security and arms control policy. >> next, a discussion on infrastructure, electric vehicles and the possible impact of amazon's new headquarters in new york city and washington, d.c. posted by the atlantic, this is just over three hours. >> please welcome patrick garringan. [applause] >> good morning. i'm patrickck garringan, execute director at atlantic life and it's my distinct pleasure to welcome you allll here this morning to the atlantic
infrastructure and transportation summit. before we get started i do want to thank you all for being here with us this morning. as you may know it is a solemn day in washington, d.c.os and across the country. as the eyes turned toward the procession of the nationall cathedral were former president george herbert walker bush will be remembered. today is a national day of mourning and is a chance us to reflect on president bush's legacy. we hope the spirit of our event today in which we'll ask tough questions about the challenges facing our society, our roads, critical infrastructure and the people whose lives hang in the balance is consistent with the broader themes of today. service and civic responsibility. as a frame for the conversation, last to the american society of civil engineers gave america's infrastructure barely a passing mark. from our roadways to our
waterways, from electric grid to gridlock traffic, systems in place to fuel to facilitate our everyday lives, it is in dire need updates. today we will dive right in peculiar from federal, congressional, local decision-makers, ceo and subject matter experts. we'll talk to companies looking to bring street level change on a global scale we will scrutinize the subjects that are affecting our own lives from baltimore's public transit amazon hq two in crystal city. before we get underway under we to think our underwriter basf are making today possible. we'll hear from them later in the program but before we get going please silence your cell phones but don'tph put them awa. you can tweak us using the handle #atlanticlive. >> and now our first conversation. to discuss baltimore's infrastructure and transportation story, it is our
pleasure to welcome to the stage baltimore mayor kathleen pew and to delete the conversation, glycolic the atlantics washington editor at large steve clemons. [applause] >> thank you, patrick. mayor pugh, thanks for joining us. >> thank you for the invite. >> next i will do this in baltimore.e. >> love it. >> i am your latest follow on twitter about 15 seconds ago, and you have this tweet which you want to read somewhere dedicated to transforming communities that event underinvested and forng decades. it's not with the city will look like in two or three years. it's what the city is going to look like for decades and for our children. which is very much the topic of today's form in many ways. i'm interested in what your dashboard looks like when you're looking ahead and w thinking whe can you as mayor with your allies make a a difference in y substantial way with the
baltimore infrastructure? >> let me begin by saying we've had some really horrific problems over the last few years that i've been mayor. mayor pugh when i think about streets collapsing, when you think about the csx railroads that runs through the city and a wall just recently collapsed on 26 26 treat and wi think about heavy rains and flooding floating down through the middle of streets and people feeling like they are almost living underwater, i said this really begs the question, when every going to fix and pay attention to the infrastructure of our city? i have to say this to you that i was in a conference almost a decade ago, andnd i talked, it s a transportation conference and we were talking about the needs of america what you think with something like $3 trillion to fix the infrastructure of our country. that was over ten years ago. and bridges. i said so how are we relating this information excellence and we have two and half minute
video. i said here's how simple we should be communicating to america about this terseness of the bridge problem that we have in our country because we have one inner-city that will cost about $150 million, two and half minutes, america's attention span is not that long. i said the commercial should be car coming, bridge collapses, car falls in. this could be you, america, fix your bridges. it's that simple. for me it was how do you go about the business of fixing the infrastructure of your city? when i became a one of the deals that was on my desk was to sell off garage is in our city. we could get some quick infusion of capital. ita had read the history of our city and in 1972 result off our airport for about 32, $36 million. can you imagine if we at least that airport and maintained ownership, what that would mean
today? that's the baltimore-washington international airport. i said i'm not selling garages. i read a book, can't think of the complete title but it's talking little cities should look at its own city and look at the capital projects as investment opportunities. so i didn't sell the garage is but i did lease them to the state, ase state agency that invests in cities and was able to raise $80 million, pay of all the debt on the garage is and and created an investment fund of about $2 million in already another 29,000,009,000,000 has come into the fund which michael enjoys $200 $200 million a year the next five years to focus on neighborhoods and communities and infrastructure that is been underinvested tranone when you think about that, you are finding and identifying these unique channels ofqu investment capital. one of the questions i know you can look at the neighbors that have neglected.
we did an article on the 20 year life expectancy disparity between different parts of baltimore, which was a staggering reality. how can you as you think about, mayor, use these infrastructure choices to sort of bring the soul of an inclusive soul back to a city when, dr. anthony fox, many other mayors out there that had some infrastructure decisions brought as a bias, a bigotry, a division in communities, didn't bring them together. so how do you undo the bad stuff and promote the right stuff? >> if you come to baltimore you would see cranes up all over the place especially in the downtown areas, because it is one of the top cities that millennials want to move into. you migrate out to some of the outer neighborhoods, you don't see the same cranes. but you do have some stretch likehs you have the park or the
racetrack and you all of these parks and waterways, and so there are opportunities for investment. it is way too look at those ares and say how do you build off of the strength of what others would consider to be weakness wax for example,ns we get slots impact money even though slots don't exist there. but it is an area that has a horrific number of reported houses. we've already torn done down something like 60 acres of boarded-up houses in that community. no library exists in the areas we arere building a brand-new in that area. we put out 17 rfps and we have double responses to every one of them because we created our own investment fund and because we have identified based on some of the strengths. we brought back in my last two years in the senate $1.2 billion in building schools in the city, which again were in some of these depressed neighborhoods
which gave us an opportunity to look at thoseoo neighborhoods we sayded-up houses were and okay how do we attract investment to this area? one of the things we were able to do is lay the foundation, brand-new school, pinnacle elementary middle school across the street from boarded-up houses. we laid the foundation are cities housing department and then we are able to attract investors to repair those boarded-up homes and then provide grant money to the of the folks were living in the neighborhood to repair. people neede to see change, and so where i focuses on quarters of the city that are very visible lead into another area, very visible and and in lookint monroe, looking at north avenue from hilton to milton, eddie bring that investment in if you were to come to baltimore now you will see that kind of investment taking place. michael is to link those communities and again to continue to reduce the boarded-up houses -- my goal.
>> let me read another tweet that you had and it's about president bush. use president george h.w. bush represented a time inw our political life when differences of opinion and approach did not result in acrimony, insult and efficient because life of public service was sewed by deep love for our country and a desire to make a positive difference. that brings me to relationship with governor hogan. how is that going? >> quite well. we to set a recent election and people know i am a democrat and so act like all democrats do, but i do understand the relationship and the important of what folks to remember, some people don't know is i was majority leader of the senate of maryland and president miller would say catherine didn't get to be the majority view of the city because she just works with democrats. my best friend in the senate happens to be the county executive. we sat on the same committees together and it is how you develop these compromises can
work together regardless of party. >> so it's a positive story, not an acrimony story. >> i think it is positive. use me in his at even though i was promoting the democrat who was running for office, yes. >> do you think the governor is undeserving baltimore in the way he's looked at certain transportation lines and some montgomery county area versus some of the lines that you think need to be developed? >> there's a question in my mind that the red line was a real issue for baltimore city. he came in right early in his administration and sent the $900 million back to washington, d.c. that would've stimulated the investment that d was needed to build the red line. i think partth of that issue was what was the abc plan. and i think we had only and a plan. there should be a be and sea plant because it was in total agreement in terms of the direction of the red line. at the same time when you think about thenk infrastructure and e
transportation needs of baltimore, rapid transit system is absolute essential for the citizens off baltimore. >> i don't know if you've read mick cornett book, about the rights of the midcity, middle level city, and he is a former mayor of oklahoma city, just ran on the gop side, lost the governor race but the book is interesting because he basically says america's megacities are getting smaller and america's mid-level cities of which baltimore is are becoming more dynamic, growing. millennials dining baltimore such -- the question is i'm interested in how you see the secret sauce of baltimore. in oklahoma city he is looking at walkability and all sorts of other dimensions, but what are the things you think of the secret sauce of baltimore that makes it hip and cool and why millennials want to live there? >> i think our director of transportation with a part of it
is the 125 miles of bike lanes were building and our city. the other is making it a more walkable city and more accessible city for transportation and also making it more accessible to some of the great communities in the city and that's what millennials are funny. that's why they like living in a downtown community or midtown community. those 125 miles of bike lanes, the 55 year olds don't find this happening as others do. i was talking to one of my staff people that is to with me, we should take those bike lines come use them for skateboarders can use them for power walkers. i said we should use them for wheelchair writers as well until he get people really acclimated to realizing this is just another form and mode of transportation, skateboarders, get on the bike clean. let's make them happening. let's have i crazes and bike lately. that's what really enhances urban cities because people who want to be near entertainment.
they want to be able to walk to the grocery store. they want to be able to get to all of their needs quickly and would you think about the infrastructure, not talk about the physical infrastructure, i'm talking with theth other things that surrounds the city whether its hospitals or colleges and universities and i said one of the things baltimore, underer te thing ultimo doesn't get promoted as, is it is a called university town. baltimore city committee calls is free and are city but johns hopkins has a $1.9 billion investment by bloomberg to make sure that young people who, to the university don't leave in debt. morgan state university another $5 million endowment for young people to go to college. we are also going to be, we call the cybersecurity of the east coast. because of where we are located, because of what's happening at the 13 subsidy company that already moved there. that's why at hanover st., bridget is important to us.
that's $150 million investment that needs to take place because it's right there between fort covington and 95. >> is johns hopkins a good partner? >> axilla partner. >> they are not just a high wall? i have to tell you we did it for him not to long ago in baltimore, had faculty member some johns hopkins who were saying themselves that they were failing and doing some of things they should in outreach to the committee, that is a reservoir of excellence but they had not done as much as they should. that's from them and i'm interested in whether you see that they should be doing more. >> they been an excellent partner for mepa and, of course, everybody, this is all in. everybody can do more but i can tell you between bloomberg and johns hopkins and interaction with me as mayor in our communities. i remember going into, we have this committee called the greater baltimore committee is with executive committee called in and wanted to have a conversation about crime and telling needed you to be focusn
what i needed to be doing and how we needed to be doing it and ended to get on it, get on it now. conversationn our and let's see how did we begin? i said why don't i begin? i can tell you where we are, how we got there, where we need to be. at the end of it i hadn't asked. might ask was for $10 million. johns hopkins was the first 2.28694 million walk out the door and tingling before the end of the week. they have been a grand partner terms of helping lead the conversations around transformation of baltimore cit city. >> you had a shared bike program that i>> understand the plug has been pulled on that. what's that story? can you get bird and scooter and others to come in? >> we have all of that spirit i am a shared bike user in d.c. i do try on the world, i always write everybody's bike. what are the economics of that? if i get on the bus that
taxpayers are paying for every bus right. are they paying for every bicycle ride? >> in fact, what the bird and scooter we're earning some money from it because that, thanks again to michelle thaller department of transportation and she said that a negotiated with them so we earning money off the bird. >> how is this scooter business? >> it's all over the city. the thing that weer love about s it's just not in the downtown area. i was coming out of my street theom other day and boom, a bird right on the corner because the gps tracking. >> do you ride? >> i try to. they won't even let me drive a car. >> is there a video of this? >> there is any of me trying both of them. on the dave election, good news, you one. bad news, we need your keys. unlike really? but i have written a bird and a scooter.
>> when i'm in baltimore we can do a bird date. >> i have actually seen them in low income neighborhoods, which is really could. i have seen young people on them. them. we did have an incident once where you can pick them up but come and i think children are getting in now. these things have to be motorized and you need to have a credit card. i remember stopping a 14 year old one day. i said where are you going? he looked at me and he says, i'm taking it back right now. i said take it back now. he ran and laid it back down. that is really catching on. again, i think those bike lanes to thoseelpful scooters. >> about the shared bike program -- >> the shared bike program kind of fell apart, but i think one of our companies, either bird, is bringing shared biking back
to baltimore so we we're workin it. so you'll be able to bike around the city. >> that's great. before we go to the audience i just want to come back to this thing because richard has written about the creative class, what happened in the city, and just when you think about infrastructure choices and decisions where freeways go, you think about the future of mobility, i'm just interested in the soul of- the city and how o make the soul of the city healthy. just as best you can in the two or three things you could push, how can you make the soul of baltimore much healthier vsm of infrastructure choices you have? >> i think the electric cars are important as well. we have seen the electric car stations now. i have one the way home right at druid hill park. every time i go by there are three or four car stopping to be filled up.
>> do have enough of those charging stations? >> they are not hard to get to. they are in locations that a very convenient to folks. they are in parks. they are right outside of city hall. they are in garages. and so yeah, i think that is -- the greening of america is important we feel like that, the bike lanes, the one of 25-mile bike lanes were doing, making walking moreg, accessible and making transportation more accessible. wiest 11 issue around the last mile to companies and corporations in our surrounding jurisdictions which is why i'm grateful for the partnerships we newlyving with her elected county executives. i hosted them all believe it or not, i did host them at my house right after the election, took them all to the football game, and go ravens. and so i have got some great partnerships and real goodha relationships in the house and
the senate as will. >> let me go to all of you. questions, comments from the floor. otherwise i will pick on someone. right here in the front. >> john wentworth. does the city of baltimore had a pedestrian plan? >> yes, we do. wewe have complete streets plan. >> what does that mean? >> that means making the city available for w walkers, bikers, everybody, looking at all of our street. we have a five-year plan in terms of how we lay out our streets. i was teasing the otherer day,ti said we've gone from horse and carriage is to cars and now the bikes and walkers and everyone. so people who live in inner-city neighborhoods and in downtown want to be able to be able to move around the city in a very complete way. and so we're trying to make it as easy as possible and so would take a lookev at almost every student in baltimore to -- >> is a one that is wrestled
with a lot of the problems that you are dealing with now that you have got it right, now that you taking some of the practices that they had been using it? i hate to say it but is her city you are envious of. >> was no. let me say, i part of 36 cities cities around the world, part of the bloomberg city team. i think we with a first class of mayors from around the country they got to share different ideas and things that we are doing. there are some studies that are doing it really well. denver was one of the first cities i went to where i saw, you could just jump on, this was the democratic convention i think eight or 12 12 years ago. just jump on, how does that work? we do have the circle in baltimore. and now what we're trying to do with the second because we've a network of -- you get the johns hopkins university, all theve colleges and universities with
circulars. i said we ought to really create a system that works for everybody and probably end up being less costly if we work together. so we're having meetings around that asro well. >> other questions or comments. >> goodni morning. i was wondering ific you could comment on theca connections between infrastructure and transportation and workforce development? baltimore like lots of success challenges as it relates to income disparities and workforce disparity across race. what is unique about baltimore and some of the things that really helps to leverage infrastructure investment, close some of those gaps? >> great question. >> one of the issues is how we are training in between. the opportunity and jobs are there. when you think about us, cybersecurity sued at east coast and when you think about the
healthcare field in the colleges and universities that exist in baltimore, the question for us becomesun how are you retooling your workforce, then how are you educating your young people to meet the needs of the workforce of the future. us it begins with coding in the schools, in elementary school, making baltimore city community college free so that our young people don't have to read about how they can get to college. when we did that come when we made community college free, coppin state said finisher two here, come here for free. so education is not an issue. we are preparing our young people at the earliest age is important. one of the otherhe things, and i said that early on in my administration was that we are people out there who just can't figure how to maneuver to the workforce. so we create mobile units. the liber system with the first one to do it. i've got another unit going to neighborhoods and everyday somebody is walk in the neighborhood, groups of people to say look, we have jobs.
we greeted the one they work for monday's paper because we know we have 10,00000 individuals coming back to our steady from the prison system and so we have responsibility to help train them as well. in fact, it is been comics, so for having conversation in the next two too three weeks with young people in our cities to talk about how, in fact, what do we need to make sure they're getting to where they need to go. we created the first ever jobs there for young people coming out of high school here we are doing that and working with the school system to track what our young people are every day. but again we with the office of employment development this summer, i put 9000 young people to work by basing $20 million to the private sector. we are working to get those things done, but at the same time homelessness, unappointed, drug addiction, crime, all of those things are impacting our workforce -- unemployment.
so i would reach those people on a daily basis as are responsible as the city and we are working on that. >> to wrap up, i love hearing about all the things you plan. i spent a lot of time in so i'm hopeful. you will not fix all the problems come he's got to get the tilt right and it's like the stock market, power, where success is a function future expectations. as you look at that, can you tell us in your time that left, what are the biggest things are going to do to turn impressions of baltimore around? >> reducing violence has to be the number one priority for the city. we're trending downward in every category. i would like to say but we'll get there. bring in a new police chief is important, community engagement. rebuilding the infrastructure of our city and neighborhoods and communities that event underinvested in decades andd make that connection from cradle
to college opportunities for jobs. all of that is priority for me. quality of life for baltimore is important because that's what attracts people. public safety and great education. >> ladies and gentlemen, baltimore mayor catherine pugh. thank you so much. [applause] ♪ >> please welcome assistant secretary for the office of electricity at the u.s. department of energy here with author and journalist kathleen koch. [applause] >> good morning, everyone, and good morning, bruce. thanks for joining us. you can do your job at the energy department last year. what are you telling is an unusual background. you have a degree and joe spent
decades in the power industry, you're the first in a position to. >> that's true. i spent nearly 20 years in new york city on operational side, emergency management for new york city and the boroughs that we have with con ed. i went to national grid where i was responsible for the entire united states holdings for national grid from asset management side. .. >> the issue is not reliability, that we're focused on. it's the resiliency of the
brits. of the grid. the resiliency of the grid is what's challenging us today and that has to do with the fact that over the last two decades, the grid has changed from a fuel secured, generation-based to a portfolio that has significant reliance on other infrastructure, energy infrastructure and i'll give you the exact piece, and kind of plagues me a little bit. >> what keeps you up at night. >> what keeps me up. a lot of things and this is one of them. 26 years ago, our generation on the electric side was gained from the gas pipelines. today it's 35% which means that if i actually lose a pipeline, i actually lose 35 -- or if i watch, 35% of my generation capacity in the united states. so we're working very hard with our regional transitional
operators to understand areas like pjm. if i lose pjm and-- >> the whole audience may not know. >> pennsylvania, jersey, maryland, generation operatorment and there's significant generation in that area. if we lose that pipeline, then we would lose several generators in that regional area. so, we're trying to figure out how to protect the pipelines as well as we protect the transmission system. basically, what it boils down to, there's interdependency today, that did not exist 20 years ago and that interdependency now has created more critical infrastructure in the united states that we have to protect from things like fiber. >> you said 99.9% reliable, you give it a "a". >> reliability, yeah. but how do you explain why the american society of civil engineers warn in their recent report and look at the grid of
the lower 48, it's at full capacity with many lines operating well beyond their design and concerns with distribution, reliability, cost of service often a single line cannot be taken out of service to perform maintenance as it will overload other connected lines. is that on target? >> i would disagree and that's why they're civil engineers and not electrical engineers. >> you're saying they don't know what they're talking about? >> that's exactly what i'm saying. so the transmission system throughout the united states is fundamentally built to a second contingency design which means you can take out any two pieces of equipment, transition lines generators and run them at full capacity. i'm not sure where they got the data from, but that's how generally the united states transition system is it built. i would be more concerned about, like i mentioned earlier, about the interdependency. if i took out a gas pipeline, for whatever reason, that high school deleterious effects on
the transition system mainly because of the generation in the united states. if they talked about that, that would be great. but i can pick out virtually any line in the united states at anytime and be able to run the system at full capacity. >> what about the issue they raised about demand. as the demands from technology increase, how are we going to meet that? >> you know, each company throughout the united states goes through a planning criteria, and so they go through what they call a second industry study and they plan their transition with the system and it's more complicated now that most utilities or a significant number of utilities in the united states are not vertical, they don't own generation and distribution. you've got a number of companies on the east coast that generation distribution and then you have private companies that own the generation. fundamentally, the utilities that have the, what we call the transition distribution, go through analysis every year
where they actually iterate. they take out one component and take out over other component on the system and see where there's bottlenecks and where it's overloaded. things of that nature. where there's a problem they put it into the system and actually fix the problem. each of the companies throughout the united states do that and then above them, we've got the regional transition operators that work with ferc, federal energy regulatory commission, so they've got the capacity to do that. the process works very well and there are a lot of companies out there, everything from the independently owned university like pepco who serves us today in washington d.c., down to municipal and the cooperatives as well and then the department of energy actually has three
power marketing utility administrations that cover two square miles where we take our federal hydro systems owned by the bureau of deck creclamations or army corps and with the transition lines and cover about 31 states. when you started your position last year, the first place you went was puerto rico. >> yes. >> can you give us sort of a rundown of how things are going there now. it took, more than-- well, more than 11 months for everybody to get their lights back on. how are they doing? >> they're continuing to work with a recovery plan and we're working with them through the office. through them, we've built a model for them. and we've taken the island and did a model like a utility would. and we're transitioning that model into a real-time model. we're bringing in measurements units, devices to sense the electrical phenomenon and we're installing them.
and shipped down there last week and we've gone through and done analysis on the system with regard to what type of generation they can put on the system to stabilize the grid. unfortunately, they've got a few plants that are off line, that are basically timed out, that need to be replaced. so-- >> i understand their grid is a bit too overly centralized. so when there's a problem it tends to cascade. are you looking at microgrids? >> we've looked at that, that's not the reason they've had blackouts on the island. the reason they've had blackouts on the island. we've solved this for them, worked through it with them. the way the grid was designed in puerto rico was appropriate for where the load existed at the time it was built. due to maintenance and capital restrictions, they haven't put money into the system and then they have lost the generation basically in the san juan area. the northeast area where san juan is where 70% of the load
is. unfortunately today, the generation compass it i in the island is in the southern part of the island. so what happens, you have to rely on 50 miles of transmission lines to get to the load up in san juan. >> and that's also where problems are, transmission lines? >> well, the transmission lines are a problem in that generally if you were designing a system you put your generation where your load is. it's kind of like electricity. >> 101. >> electrical engineering 101. when you have 70% of the load in san juan, normally you'd have 70% of your generation in san juan. the generation plants at alaseco and san juan, two areas where they had generation, one was off line well before hurricane maria due to structural steel issues. so they don't have enough generation, they have about 400 mega watts of generation in san juan when they need about 2000 watts. so you have to relien 0 the transmission system to take it
from the south to the north and unfortunately physics get involved and you have line losses and reactive power flow problems and that was the problem that we had during the recovery. restoration. so i was down there about two weeks after the hurricane hit, helping them restore the system and actually, you know, power the transmission system to get the rest picked up. the problem we fundamentally had was, we have generation in the south which basically was intact. had no problems. and we had a transmission line that had a very little problems on the west side of the island. we were able to fix those quick, but the problem is, when you start transmitting power across long distances, you have these line losses and you have the magnetizing problem. so the corps. the army corps was there and very unfortunately, i've been in this business for a long time, i've never seen an organization move out as quickly as the army corps did. we put two 25 megawatt
generators in and the joke was we didn't light a light bulb with it, but what we did do, we magnetized the system there and once we generated there and we could magnetize the whole system and restore it. we're continuing to work with them. we've put together a phase one approach on what we believe are the best investments. i believe based on the analysis we've done, that generation in that area is going to really stabilize the island. one, it eliminates the whole reactive power flow issue. number two, it eliminates the line losses on the island and number three, probably most importantly, it drives the cost of the commodity down about 40% for the entire island. which is a huge economic driver and something we're really doing. >> and when it comes to national climate assessment, and it has to do with puerto
rico. it predicts more storms like maria, so more threat to our grid from storm surge on the coasts, from higher temperatures throughout the year, issues with hydro electric power, decreasing of water flow in our rivers. what are your thoughts on the threats that are outlined. >> we take an all hazards approach within the office of electricity so we've looked at every hazard that's out there and we incorporate that into our planning with regard to the design of the grid. we're very, very fortunate in that through the-- so we have two organizations in the energy sector that coordinate with the federal government and one is the electricity sector, coordinating council and the other is oil and natural gas coordinating council. and that membership, the membership of those organizations made up of, you know, the electricity sector, 30 ceo's and the trade organizations for the entire industry. appa and reca eppi.
we basically pick the best practices and make sure everybody is aware of them and then we utilize them in the system. as we look at resiliency, the all hazards approach. we take a look at cyber, physical risk. the weather events and the fires in california. we work with the underlying, and work through the problems with our 17 national labs. >> before we go to questions, i want to quick ask you about cyber. and obviously when we heard from dni, dan coates, he said the effects of cyber attacks are increasing and more than half of the energy sector. what are we doing to protect that? >> that's a very good question. so, obviously, this is a focus of the president, as well as the secretary of energy, rick perry.
and rick perry, his leadership, we stood up an entire office, focused on cyber security. so we stood up the organization called caesar. used to be my organization. we split it out because of the importance and elevated it. karen evans is the assistant secretary for that, and so we have now a complete focus at the assistant secretary level for cyber security, energy security and emergency response. so we take this threat very seriously. that and physical threat are the two threat vectors that we are the most focused on and we'll continue to work with our partners within industry, as well as the intelligence community which it's a part of because of the national nuclear administration, and the nsa within doe. so we have very good visibility of what the vector is and through ceasar and working with industry to solve the problem.
not only the electric side, but the oil and natural gas side. because as i m he thinksed earlier, there is-- as i mentioned there's tremendous interdependence. >> and let's go to questions, do we have? identify yourself, please. >> what's the impact of renewables on the system. utility, scale, and rooftops? >> renewables have really made some tremendous progress in being integrated into the grid, both as megawatt scale and you know, behind the meter. >> let's put up a graphic while you talk that shows down a breakdown of our power system and how much is renewable. >> oh, okay. you know, we believe and i believe in our department we are looking for renewables to really, from a strategic standpoint provide really a great opportunity from a national security perspective to provide power where, you
know, things like fossil or nuclear or something else may not be available, or where there's interdependency based on the supply chain. >> does that need to increase, 17%? >> absolutely. i think at the end of the day and i think the secretary said this many times. we look at this from an all of the above approach. any generation, i've said this many times, any generation is good generation. and really, you know, we're concerned about from a national security perspective is, really looking at how do i secure the fuel supply or the supply chain that really provides the, you know, whatever it's going to be to-- and then end up in the generation component. so, you know, as i mentioned earlier, when i've got a gas pipeline that runs for hundreds of miles, to feed a gas generating unit, the problem is, if you take out the pipeline, i lost my gas generation.
if i have a solar wind farm there, that's great because that doesn't need to have the supply chain component. where we do struggle, and i was at a meeting in south carolina-- yeah, south carolina, about two weeks ago, is the itriple e standard. >> what is that in laymen's determines. >> the renewable standard. as we integrate things like solar, the traditional relaying is really 100-year-old technology. as we start converting from dc to ac. particularly on the system, are different from the past and i've been meeting with a number of companies, duke wag -- was at that meeting and talked to folks from there and they're struggling to get them to work properly on the distribution
system. we're working in our labs to come up with the kind of next generation of the protection schemes that we will be able to integrate more and more renewables because they really have a lot of space to take over as we, you know, expand the system in the portfolio. >> all right. and we only have 27 seconds, anyone with a really quick question? [laughter] >> like a yes or no question. >> richard layman, rebuilding place. you mentioned threat vectors. my understanding is a lot of the wildfires in california are triggered by uninsulated power lines arcing and stuff. how is the department making dealing with that a priority. >> and residents of paradise suing pg and e are suing right now. >> and so we've talked with
pg&e and from the perspective of uninsulated power line. every power line in the united states is not insulated. that's not unique to california that's the way it is. so our transmission system, it's bare, bare aluminum with steel, you know, inserts. so, our distribution system, you might have a covering on it, but it's still, you know, it's fundamentally uninsulated. we are working with them through some of the technology that we have that actually has a higher capability to do sensing. so, today the best sensing technology on the market senses about 50 times a second. we've been pushing, and i was actually just down to oak ridge national lab where we have some of the technology running right now. we're actually pushing this capability up to about a million times a second. and that fidelity will allow us to actually see an electric phenomenon. so if something sparks on your system, we'll actually be able to see the spark because of the
change in the physics on the system. so, we're working with them, obviously, they're in emergency restoration mode at the moment awe we've got plans, actually to put these in their system and unfortunately, they're not commercially available. they're really not ready for commercialization, but given the risk that is associated with the wildfires, we're actually going to work to get it into their system and really just prove out the capability to identify those systemic risks. >> excellent. thank you for your terrific questions and please thank my wonderful guest bruce walker, astandpoint secretary of energy. >> thank you. [applaus [applause] >> powering electric, please welcome kathleen joy, ceo of ed go. please welcome back the atlantic's steve clemens. >> hey, everybody, hello again. i so wish i had a tie on right
now. so, i want to start this-- let me change my voice a little and get a little lower. i want to pretend that i'm larry kudlow. you all know larry kudlow hfinancial advisor said the 7500 tax credit in the electric vehicle space will go awayment so i'd love to give you a chance to respond to me, larry kudlow, and tell us what you would share with him. >> larry, larry, larry. look, the world is moving toward an electrified transportation future. it's early days, but the forecast is that we're going to have two and a half million ev's on the road by 2022 here in the united states. global car companies announced investing in changing factories over and developing models, but the costs are still coming down on those, so this is a perfect-- the tax credit is a perfect way to ease americans and frankly
people, around the world into electrified transportation, so it's a really, really important policy and it's actually designed well so that once a car company reaches a certain level of sales, that tax credit starts to go down and we've seen that be a very, very effective policy instrument in other energy sources and now being applied to cars which is going to both, improve the environment and help the u.s. economy and that's a good thing. >> what is the ev story? i'm going to ask the audience a question, more of a personal use story yet or is it trucks and buses and mass transit? where are you having the biggest footprint right now when we look at the, you know, the transportation collage, if you will? >> it's a great question. when people think of ev's, they think of personal use and ev go has the biggest public charging network in the country. and we -- when you think about individual drivers charging their cars, either at home or at work or on the go, but interestingly, now a third of
our giga watt hours through our network, our big network system, 34 states is in ride share, which is fascinating. right? in 2016, about 1% of vehicle miles traveled in the united states was via ride share, uber, lyft, et cetera. the forecast is that by 2030, 25% of vehicle miles traveled are going to be via ride share and i actually believe that forecast. i've got two millennial kids, and when they graduated from college my husband said, here, happy graduation, and here is one of the family cars, and they were priuses. they gave them back-- well, they sold them. we did the math, we don't want to own the car and we said how are you going to get around? they said via ride share. it's fascinating. i think the eco system of transportation is changing. electrification, electrified stuff is part of it, but we saw in the first panel with the
mayor of baltimore how important the last mile is, how important e-scooters are. it's a fun and interesting time where we have to be put putting all of these things together as we get to our future. >> to be fair, how many of you today have or own an e-vehicle? one or two? you've got work to do. you've got work to do. >> how many californians? >> how long does it take to charge? (inaudible) >> maybe an hour. >> fast charging in an hour, he's got a good hookup. i was getting a lesson in the back room about charge times for those of you who get into this and we were talking with catherine pugh and she says there are charging stations through the city and you kind of pooh-poohed it, if i may. >> i didn't. >> i thought you did, yes. >> no, i think that she's visionary and very much leaning forward. >> yeah, yeah. >> and we have stations in
baltimore as well. >> you said that these are slow charging stations. >> we have fast charging. what many people-- we need to make sure of is that the perception of being able to charge is not a gating item to ev sales. >> right. >> right. and so folks, if folks can charge at home, if they have a garage, very simple to plug in and charge overnight. either do it in an old-fashioned outlet that you put your hair dryer in, coffee machine or a 240 volt and overnight charge in say, five hours. alternatively if you're going to the grocery store why not be able to charge your car quickly while you go to the grocery store and ev go has-- we have fast charging outlets all over grocery stores and drug stores and places where you'll only be for 30 to 45 minutes. so it's a combination of solutions, but what we need to make sure of is rit large, and access to charging is not a gating item for transformation. >> who is the villain in your
story? who is your enemy in the sense as you're trying to sort of disperse this in cities, urban areas, non-urban areas. who and what is getting in your way? is it donald trump-- oh. >> want me to use this instead. >> i use it all. yeah. >> who is the enemy? look, i don't mean to sound polly ann-ish, i'm a 30-year veteran in the energy sector, these transitions take time and the technology uptake so what we need-- the car companies of now, the car companies used to be resistant. they now have transformed. so we've got as i say $100 billion committed by global car companies, plus, and that doesn't include the investments that the chinese are making in ev. there are literally over 400 ev companies in china. they're not the enemy, they're leaning forward. consumers, consumers don't know that much. based on your survey of the
audience we need to make it easier for consumers to experience an ev ride. and there's almost nobody that i have met that has driven an ev that would ever go back to a non-ev. because it's fun. it's completely comfortable. and the torque is fantastic if you're a car person. so, i don't think that we have enemies. i think we have an opportunity to lean forward and educate and push and market, but i don't think that we have enemy. >> is gm ceo mary barra friend or foe? >> friend, total friend. she is a visionary. what she is lean forward on her zero zero zero program. she's-- we have a partnership where the bolts, they're selling the bolts, all ev, they lease them to ride share drivers and those ride share drivers, they don't want to take-- they can't take four to six hours to charge, they need to charge fast because every moment they're not driving,
they're not earning a living so they charge on our network and more and more of that is coming. i believe in that. gm, we haven't talked autonomous, but gm has a big investment in cruz, their autonomous vehicle platform. absolutely, you know, gm is friend. >> you were assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy in the obama administration and i'm interested in -- we had assistant secretary for electricity, i guess, assistant secretary walker is energy and electricity and energy for electricity. in that area of the federal role, i'm interested in how you see that and how necessary federal partnership, leadership, or acquiescence is to what you're doing. mike bloomberg has been out there saying ignore the federal government, they're useless, they're in the way. we don't need them. we can work with states and governors and whether it's climate or renewables. just forget d.c. and that's been a bloomberg message.
do you think that's the right message? >> i don't think that's the right message at all. look, not to say that cities aren't important. they're incredibly important, but the role of the federal government, the benefits that the federal government have to moving the eco system along more quickly, are significant. i mean, when-- i mean, i was the a the department of energy during the recovery act and we were able to make investments in research. we were able to create policy settings at that hastened acceleration when technologies were mature. there were a variety of tools available to federal policy makers to work in partnership with business, to work in partnership with researchers, to work in partnership with state and local governments. so, i think it's an abrogation of responsibility to say that the federal government has no constructive role here. it absolutely does. >> we often talk a lot about autonomous vehicles and the internet of things and retrofitting cities and how do you see the world that you're a part of with the ev go, as
melding into, you know, this new next infrastructure? >> look, our charging infrastructure is an essential ingredient. i mean, the infrastructure, infrastructure is often viewed as sort of boring, but essential. it's actually really, really interesting. so what we're doing is placing building our infrastructure where it's going to be needed by individual drivers, grocery stores, where it's going to be needed by ride share drivers at dedicated depots and where it's needed by trucks, delivery services, so we've got partnerships with companies that are actually electrifying major delivery fleets because they're going to need reliable charging infrastructure. it's an essential ingredient. >> what does it cost? >> to charge-- to do a fast charge? >> to put in the infrastructure. >> to put in the infrastructure. >> let's say you're tulsa, oklahoma and i have no idea what they have there now,
tulsa, a mid sized city. an oil, red state area, but you're going to try and diversify your transportation mix and energy use mix and bring in millennials who want to have byrd and scooters all over. what do you think the commitment is and how do you put that financial package together that works for you? >> well, what i would say, let me-- if i could shift from oklahoma to virginia, a real-world example. we have a private-public partnership with virginia. we have ev infrastructure across the state. some of the funding is actually coming from the volkswagen diesel-gate settlement on their side and some money from us. we are over the next three years build that infrastructure across the state. we will then own it and operate it. so, that is sort of a beautiful thing. now, the way the business of charging works for a company like ours, or like ev. go, is that we need to have enough ev's to be charging to
have our revenues exceed our cost. if we want to skate ahead of the puck, as wayne gretzky used to say and build ahead of where ev demand is now and if the audience is typical for washington, i'm not sure it is, we need to build before all of those cars are actually driving around the roads so that people will buy those cars, then we need a public-private partnership and some financial support to do that. >> so, we have lots of folks on c-span watching right now, beyond the very smart audience that we have here, and i'm interested in what kinds of steps you're doing to sort of-- to be quite honest, many people look at ev the sort of playground of the rich, you know, people who have a lot of money, resources and what not, this is something way beyond. i mean, not to overstate tulsa or something, but, you know, they don't really think that this is of their world. how do you create on ramps for folks so adoption much this feels more natural at, i guess
an every-man level. every-woman level. we have partnerships with most of the consider companies and they are 2019 is going to be a pretty big year for introduction of new models. you may have seen this morning or yesterday we had an announcement ev go had an announcement with kia and hyundai, who are coming out with all ev suv's available early next year, and you know, the location of our charging stations is going to be right there on the inboard dash we similarly have partnerships with nissan and bmw. they were early providers of ev's and we work with them in their dealerships across various markets to get the word out. now, with that said. well over half of the ev's driven on american roads are in california so we've got work to do to spread that, to sort of spread that message, create more comfort. you know, in 2018, i think some of the best marketing channels for any product are
peer-to-peer. that is, oh, i have a friend who has one. take a drieve. we're more likely to see much more of that going forward for the uptake of these. >> and i have a couple of questions. an international question, i'm interested in energy information, or energy innovation, infrastructure competition. years ago when i worked-- we were talking about senator jeff bingham, senator from new mexico, and we had the cooperative development agreements with companies like gm, and gm was saying quite publicly they were working with sandia, taxpayer supported national security research to try to get as much technology as they could and put it into the facilities in china because if they didn't do that, they wouldn't be in china 30 years from now. so, it's a fascinating triangle of looking at technology, innovation in this country and pumping it abroad and now when you look at energy, innovation in china, i'm just wondering,
where do we stack up. where does what we're talking about, infrastructure in the u.s., how does that compare to what's going on in shanghai today, or when you look at south korea, which is if you haven't been there lately, it's unbelievable in some of the areas you were talking about, shared resources and charging stations everywhere and i'm just wondering. does the united states need to feel the pressure that it may be falling behind in ways that we may not all realize? >> yeah, harkening back to when i went into the department of energy and steve chu, nobel prize physicist was the secretary at that point. >> sure. >> and he, at the beginning of that, of the first obama administration, there was a sense that back then that the chinese were very, very good copiers, but not necessarily innovating in their own right. that has changed. the investments have been substantial. but with that said, competition is good. we have such great capability in this country. on the research side. we have large markets to
pioneer things in a pilot way and then to ramp up and scale them, so, shame on us, if we don't get onto it. this is a-- you know, as somebody who believes that we have an imperative to over the next ten years significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, it is incumbent on us to move quickly. we need to grab that as make it affordable. we're capable of that as global citizens. >> and thank you for telling us about your car, our pedestrian.org. >> what's the status of charging stations in canada and europe. is there approach similar to ours? >> in canada and europe. in europe the market is much more fragmented. there's lots and lots of individual small charge operators. canada is somewhere in between and we're excited ev go is excited for the next market entry to be in canada.
>> interesting. >> other questions? >> yes. >> hello, greg lauer. thank you for your contributions today. what he is the number one thing the federal government can do in 2019 to electrify the united states transportation economy? >> number one, can i have two? >> yeah, yeah. >> actually i would say -- i would say support the fuel economy standards, don't inhibit that. that's actually a macro driver that has got-- again, i used to reside over alliance standards. and setting the bar and letting them reach those targets is incredibly important. if there's an infrastructure funding bill, makes sure that ev infrastructure support is part of that. as we electrify our transportation sector, again, all kinds of transportation, that is now an essential infrastructure ingredient.
>> any other questions? comments? you know, let me ask you just one, along the lineses, i interviewed rick perry at the atlantic festival, secretary perry and i asked him, where are you on renewables and fuel standards. he said you know, we've had 7 million more people over some period of time move to texas as on our emissions went down and that shows what efficiency we're achieving. and i asked him do you get in trouble with president trump for succeeding so well on this? and you know, he didn't like that. but, but, it raises the interesting question of whether, as you look at it, because you were in the doe and whether doe is a partner to come back to your question, on whether or not as you look at it today, you know, whether the white house noise is really not taking doe off its objectives of trying to get efficient, stable, diversified energy that
actually is helping on climate, or do you think that we're at a nexus or an inflection point where the risks of the doe going in a different direction are real? >> look, i think there are two things happening. one is that the market has moved. businesses have moved. coal plants are no longer the most cost effective thing to do. so, i think that you've got giant international and national businesses moving ahead with a deeply decarbonized future. that's number one and when you've got the private sector momentum, that's critically important. when it comes to the department of energy, the congress continues to fund a cleaner economy. so that, you know, the world that i used to provide over, congress keeps investing in those renewable energy types to keep moving it along. how about that? >> ladies and gentlemen, cathy zoi chief executive officer ev go.
thank you very much. >> for a conversation about sharing the road, please welcome steven taylor, regional general manager for the mid atlantic at lyft. tom, director of urban innovation and mobility at ups, amoco at thehertoatherton, of te streets coalition at smart growth america, and brandon pollock, director of global civic engagement and strategy at byrd. back to lead the conversation is kathleen koch. >> thank you all. i think we filled the couch. so the title of our discussion today is sharing the road. so, really, i'd like to ask you, steve, brandon on tom, can you share the road when basically all three of your companies are in this street fight for curb space? i mean, how do you-- and then the average driver and the average pedestrian, how do you all co-exist? anyone. >> i'll just jump right in.
i don't know if actually i would consider it a street fight at least between the folks on this panel, but i would throw out the fact that if you go to in i street in america and look at how the curbside is designed, 80 to 90% of that curbside is allocate today personal vehicles so i think what you'll see in the coming years, a reallocation of how we allocate space and the city and goal and agenda of that. because the physical infrastructure that's there saying that-- is saying that this is the market demand for like what that -- it's what it should be, right? it should be 90%, but the actual demand or like what is increasing, right, is e-commerce, is use of shared mobility or transportation network companies is scooters or bikes, you know, other modes of mobility and i think that there has to be sort of that
reckoning that takes place. >> and it's not a zero sum game, right? we know the answer is not just everybody take ride share. it's not just scooters, it's not just dock or dockless bikes, it's not public transportation, it's a mixture of all of that. it's going to require us to work together, private companies as well as the public sector to find most affordable and equitiable transportation for everybody. the infrastructure of our city is not going to change overnight. in the meantime we need to find and encourage ways of allowing people the best, most affordable transportation options possible. >> brandon, are you guys working together? >> we certainly talk quite a bit, especially us and lyft, but and the other scooter companies. i think one of the things that's very exciting is a year ago we weren't having this conversation. scooters were not even part of the conversation. and so now, it's funny when i walked in the door and i heard the mayor talking about it, and got nervous, what did i walk
into. the thing, cities have been embracing this. as we think about, you know, talking about curb space and i think the thing is, like there's a very much, by really developing our infrastructure appropriately, you know, around use of bike lanes, getting things off the sidewalks, that actually that we could have a very strong infrastructure and we can all co-exist very well. i mean, the conversation has shifted from how are we going to prepare for autonomous vehicles and now we have scooters, now we have cars, trucks, how is it going to work together? and i think now, to tom's point as well, it requires us to all work together, but at the same time, from an individual perspective, it's also getting stuff off of the sidewalks and, you know, making sure that we're able to kind of view the roads in new ways. >> in your organization, the national complete streets coalition, you work to ensure, safe, comfortable and convenient access for all using
our city streets. so, how do you see this current battle for streets and curb space? >> yeah, i think this is an exciting time because i think what these new mobility tools are doing is actually forcing us to look at our roads and our streets and i would actually disagree a little, saying it's a zero sum game. because in a way i think there's room for a lot more modes. >> more? >> more modes about you it's forcing us to look at how we allocate space on the current infrastructure. it's reflective of our values and as tom said we're dedicating over 80% of our streets to not just -- mostly to parking and this is starting to force the conversation about how we're actually not just allocating the curb space, but how we're allocating our roads because there's room for scooters, room for freight, but it's not putting nem on the sidewalk or the bike lanes. it's a conversation do we actually start looking at taking more of the right of way
and accommodating other modes and looking at actually, maybe we accommodate less space for single occupancy vehicles. >> trying to get people out of their cars? >> it's going to get people out of their cars, but it's not even just out of their cars. it's that, are we-- the allocation of our space reflect our values and what we want for mobility future. >> to be clear, it's not a zero sum game. there's no winners and losers, it's about the best possible solution. >> i think it's a little zero sum in the sense that people do have to-- there's going to be trade-offs and i think the users can win, but we do have to be honest about what this means for single occupancy vehicle use, whether it's autonomous or electrified, or carbon run. >> and i like what you brought up about values. because i have the luxury like talking to a lot of city officials, what are your transportation priorities? i say, well, it's safety and then it's shared mobility or transit, and then it's goods, movement, sort of economic
development and then it's moving people, it can single occupancy vehicles. >> if you take that list of priorities and you take it to a street, it's the exact opposite, right? like there's a punch of parking, then you might be able to find a loading zone, you might have a bus lane, and you might get hit crossing the street. so like, i don't know how you'd sort of a flip that has to happen. >> and this is where working with city planners, and kind of redesigning our street scapes are so important. >> how you do it in reverse, it's already there. >> one of the things i mentioned is people don't walk out of their front door and say, oh, there's cars everywhere, parked everywhere, but they'll say things about bikes or scooters and so there's a shift that has to take place and a conversation that has to take place to your points about even parking and how do we get some of the cars off the roads so the streets go from just covered with cars to the cars being gone and focusing on scooters or bikes or other pieces of transportation. >> tom, i want to go back to
you. it's a busy holiday season so i know you guys, your drivers are everywhere delivering gazillions of packages, but what are you doing differently looking at these new challenges that you're facing? i understand in seattle, downtown, you're trying tricycles? we have a picture, i think, what they look like. >> different from the average pike bike. >> this is a model we have deployed in hamburg, germany. and the volume around the holiday season essentially doubled and e-commerce is at an astronomical rate, 15, 16%. so the demand for our services is growing and then the-- as sort of alluded to, there's less and less curbside space and harder to get around cities and it's more congested. so, at least for this type of solution, which is-- i wouldn't characterize
necessarily as a holiday solution or something like that, but it's one of-- we have about 30 projects all around the world where we're testing and working with cities to try to explore, well, how can we mutually achieve goals in terms of ups serving its customers. maybe in the city it's air quality driven or sustainability. maybe in the u.s. it's congestion driven or road lane blockage or you don't want to have a truck in a bike lane or something like that. so, there's-- every city has different goals, so us, how do you innovate and collaborate so that we can actually maybe even deliver as efficiently. it's not something we can say put a stamp on and say this bike is just as good as a truck, but something that we're testing and trying to learn from in collaboration with cities, just to the point about what ups is doing different this holiday season. actually, a lot of the-- characterize the more impactful innovations that are happening in freight right now resolve
around network planning and how it's optimized on the network to try sort of like holistic efficiencies. i think the, what this sort of gets to, like ups runs an integrated, consolidated network and we're trying to move a great amount of stuff, really, you know, in the consolidated-- almost more like shared mobility in a way. if you can imagine e-commerce works to actually reduce personalities vehicle trips. instead of brandon and i going to target individually, target is coming to us. but if there's another future, whatever you want, however you want it, and you get a burrito delivered to you and it's sort of like, that burrito arrived in a vehicle, like that didn't replace anything. >> right. >> so, i think that the more impactful technology, how do you drive that network scale and efficiency that you can run that really integrated efficient network.
>> ben, one of your fellow panelists mentioned safety. and the e-scooters started popping up on the streets of 100 u.s. cities. we saw a surge of injuries and we saw people die in scooter accidents. what are you doing to keep your passengers safe, pedestrians safe and especially this time of year, when you have people along the sidewalks carrying packages and more distracted than ever and you factor in ice and snow. >> so, you know, i wouldn't characterize it as dropping scooters, especially i can't speak to how my competitors focus on, you know, going into a markets, but we always, first, before i get to safety points, we always look to strategically partner with cities every step of the way. before we actually go into a market, we're laying groundwork, working with cities, and stake holders, whether it's the mayor's office or d.o.t., talking about what we're doing, how we plan to
engage from the safety perspective, but also, when it comes to regulations so that way there's actual, now, those days of giving the middle finger to government by startups is long over. and so, you really need to work with them, showcasing how you can be a partner. we very much look at cities as customers. we don't look at them as just like some government or nuisance. it's like we've got to work together if we're going to be successful. on the safety front, you know, so we're obsessed with safety and we've kind of prided ourselves as being kind of an industry leader, you know, as far as the tools for our riders and not just, we've given away 50,000 free helmets. that's a great start, but that's not the solution to all safety, right? which is why we focus on honing in and talking to cities on protected bike lanes. more money to infrastructure in the bike lanes is highly important. where shooters go is where bikes should be going.
in the bike lanes and shouldn't be riding on the sidewalks. >> or bikes where scooters going. >> scooters and bikes should be living harmoniously, if you will. what's really interesting show on the safety point and i know it gets a lot of click bait. scooters across the industry, showing that scooters are safer than bikes. you hear more about scooters in the paper because, you know, it's the hot new thing so if there are accidents, like you're hearing about it more. just like if, when there was a first death on autonomous vehicles, you hear about it more. when was the last time you looked in the paper on-line or whatever and saw the comments about bike injuries, probably can't remember the last time you did that, right? so the data is showing the opposite. >> interesting. >> so, we're getting higher utilization rates, bike shares, six, seven, eight times greater. so, we very much think that this is revolutionizing
micromobility and safety becomes the number one issue because one death is too many deaths, and you know, another kind of key point is when you talk about death is it's the cars, it's the riders, it's not actually the people on the scooters that are at fault. the people riding in the cars. you had a woman-- >> are you saying distracted drivers? >> i think in one case somebody ran a red light. you had a case in cleveland where a woman was killed by a driver that was under the influence, right? so, those are the key things. not the act on the scooter, but what happened in that situation. we're seeing the complete opposite, which is scooters are very safe. yes, there are accidents, it does happen. people hit potholes, they fly off. like anything else, any other mode of transportation, but it's what we do to ensure that we have the right policies in place, in order to kind of grow the industry. >> steve, i know lyft recently
acquired the new york-based company motivate and with that you've now become america's largest bike share service and you're also looking at scooters. what's going on? >> so, our mission at lyft is to improve people's lives to the world's best transportation and we feel doing so is providing them options for transportation, not just ride share, but docked and dockless bikes and scooters. in santa monica, in d.c., in the very near future, integration with transit. so you open up your lyft app in the only choose ride share, not only choose the scooter option, but you could choose how to get to your location using transit and that to me is showing-- demonstrating how we're providing a full suite of options. what's fun with this for me from an options perspective, is when we talk to partners, whether it's universities, hospitals, government agencies and they say hey, what can you do for us to increase the parking issue we have or the congestion issue that we have
on our campus or in our cities. we can say, well, we have ride share options, scooters, bikes. and providing options and detailing those to the city or to the custody, private sector or public sector, we think is the best solution going forward. we're extremely kited about-- we're excited about it. i've been with lyft and more exciting. and motivate and launching scooters know the just in the district, but also as of mond monday, in-- it's exciting. >> eleft-- we left something in the air when we talked about other modes of transportation, what's out there that we're not using yet? >> oh, i don't know. one. things if you were to think about a year ago today. we didn't anticipate scooters. five years ago, who would have thought we the gnc's coming and we have to open up, there needs to be more modes, scooters are,
you know, feel how do you about scooters, but they only accommodate very mobile active people. a lot of the work that we do has to do around people that are living with mobility challenges, that work pretty closely with aarp. looking to provide modes for, you know, people who are aging in place and might not be able-- might not feel comfortable riding a scooter. it goes back to, i think we can't, in a way, predict the modes that are coming. but that we have to prepare the infrastructure to support what's going to come, regardless. you know, we talked and talking about the safety issue and what we do know regardless of the what the data is saying about scooters. roads aren't getting safer for people outside of cars. last year, we killed about 6,000 people who were walking on our streets. we killed 6,000 people the year before. and they're going up while
traffic fatalities have gone down and walking rates are stagnant. the vehicle miles traveled are going up and walking rates are stagnant yet we're killing more and more pedestrians and psychists. >> is it a combination of distracted drivers and distracted walkers? you see so many people walking in their phone. >> i was thinking the same way brandon is saying it's not about-- i think we focus a lot on what we call, and talk about this, but victim blaming and-- we published a report dangerous by design and we look at america's infrastructure. what we're talking about overall doesn't support other modes. the way that we designed urban roads, we took the principles from highway design so we get high speed, high volume. it doesn't matter whether we're talking about scooters, or hover boards, whether we're talking about like flying
tricycles-- before we extract the design of infrastructure we're not setting up to are this future. that's the approach i take. i assume with the innovation and rate of change, we're going to have mobility options that make it possible, i mean, the boomers are a huge market and someone out there right now is thinking about a way to get them around in had a way that's new so they can age in place, they can access transit. they can provide, you know, that they can have that and we need to be ready, you know, from a policy perspective to support that or we're just putting them on dangerous roads. >> tom, before we go to questions, i wanted to ask you, and kind of run across the panel, too. what do you see is our way out of this as we do look down the road to the future. autonomous vehicles. you're looking at that, is that going to help? >> so i think that there's an
element certainly of the technology innovation and what will drive change and it's like congestion. i think that things like autonomous vehicles and drones, they obviously get a ton of height, but then sort of going back to my point like network planning tools, like the thing i mentioned earlier, there are things, un-sexy, not super broadly like hip things that are very impactful from the fright side. containerization or universality of the containerization and moving efficiently between a global with supply chain from overseas, through a port, to a hub, back to the city. like all of-- and interconnected way, and i think that that type of innovation is actually what's going to enable in some ways the consolidation of freight or expeditious movement of it into and out of cities and to what will actually solve it, i sort of go back to the, like the technology itself. like the vehicle or drone or
whatever it is isn't going to solve it without the partnership and collaboration with cities and the sort of philosophical change when it comes to how do you accommodate different modes and redesign the curb and underlying policies for the whole infrastructure, if you will, and like to actually change the behavior that you see on a daily basis and to sort of shift -- i think the direction of things from like, you're moving people, not just, like, vehicles around and so, i think that's a fundamental shift that has to happen. >> briefly before we go to questions, what is lyft thinking about as it looks to the future? essentially right now it's ride sharing companies are actually increasing traffic in our nation's cities. >> debatable. right? so our goal has always been to improve people's lives through the world's best transportation, the only way to do that is to defeat traffic and congestion. i don't think that the ride
share companies are solely to blame for any congestion that people are experiencing. by a show of hands, how many people here drove their car to this event? so fewer than normal. that's-- didn't prove my point. fewer than normal. in most rooms when i ask that question the large majority of people raise their hands. ... this is an enterprise players will. if we can cleanse enterprise companies, we can help defeat the problem in a larger massive way. >> let's go to questions. we have one right here. >> the reason i drove to be part of the question because i have to drop off my wife and my son this morning. my question is about i think a
lot of technology innovations around ride shares and focus on individuals. how about family innovations? >> great question. >> i'm happy to jump on it. i think the families, so besides providing transportation as a service, the idea of shared rides is a big thing. my wife and i when we commute on the same day together with often share a ride together. we can share a ride together and filling up more of those seats. one of the problems is we face is providing transportation options and ride shares for minors. that something we're currently talking about but it don't think the industry is come up with a really good solution for that but i probably get the question more than any other question on panels like this, how do we get our kids are bound because that's a big problem. the family situation is something that needs to be looked at because we look at
individual mobility options. a lot of our solutions are focused on urban centers, and urban centers like d.c. where 38% of all households don't own and operate their own car anyway. people choose options and it's working. once we see more rideshare usage and vehicle mileage driven are extending into suburbs we will have to focus more on that issue. >> question back here. >> as a person who walks in this city five miles a day and almost every day, was almost hit by a bike on the sidewalk, almost hit by a biker or scooter, why are you trying to prevent them from being on the sidewalks? >> first of all i do give you props walking five miles a day. but to your point, we have been pushing to get scooters of the sidewalks for almost since inception. we are trying to de- clutter
sidewalks as i pointed out. we educate riders from the beginning not to ride on sidewalks. the vast majority of cities you're not supposed to do that. they shouldn't be doing it anyway. if we hear that there are problems whether it's from concerned citizens, policymakers, whomever we seem to directly address it through our community managers do it, we do so, educate and social media coupled events. we look to try to get people off the sidewalks into the bike lanes or writing on the side of the road, as i mentioned were bicycles are going which they shouldn't be writing on the sidewalks either but that's our perspective. we always constantly look at educate people not to do. >> thank you for letting have the last word. i think that's great and the thing that brings up the challenge that really we had talked about this backstage but what is one thing city should be
doing or locals is that we need to, i'm going to hearken back to the same talking point is that we have to proactively plan for new mobility future. the reason those scooters are there because they don't feel somewhere else. how many people have been on a scooter? right. and how many people feel comfortable riding in traffic on a scooter? and i'm a cyclist, and i live in the district, from my house to d.c., i'm not always in a protected by claim. if we're talking about a new mobility future, how do we provide that space? i can see the scooters are not on the sidewalk because they just feel like they need to get on the sidewalk. they are there because it's the safest place for them to be, and that we need to again look at the space we allocate. >> as as a said, allocation and incentives, communication. there's also enforcement cited
this as well. i sit on on the d.c. police foundation and had a meeting this week with the assistant chief of traffic deals with this and we talk about enforcement. hopefully that helps solve some of your problems. >> although i do think that comes with a little loaded because one of the big issues in biking and enforcement and cars and enforcement is, going to take it to a totally different perspective the with issues with enforcement. >> definitely. >> when we look at who is adopting scooters and we look at the fact we are much more likely to criminalize people of color, and honestly, my neighborhood, the people are young black been on a bet that the first ones that will be profiled to take over. and again the best way is through the infrastructure and enforcement, enforcement comes with its own issues here so i cautioned us a look at enforcement as a solution. >> we could go on and on but we're out of time. thank you, audience, thank you
panelists. [applause] >> please welcome eric rohlfing, senior technical advisor at arpa-e and the office of policy of the u.s. department of energy, heiko urtel, basf, and director of the esf battery materials north america, usually the conversation, joseph jones, vice president of innovation communications at basf. [applause] >> thanks very much and good morning. i'm glad to be with you to talk about the future of electromobility, both globally and take a hit in the united states if we know there's lots of brilliant minds working on developing the next generation
of safe efficient reliable energy sword against which is to advance the cause of electromobility and by extension the cause of clean air. that's one of the topics we want to address today. also the enduring success of the internal combustion engine has set an expectation of equal or you could argue even higher performance from electric vehicles in the future. those are a few of the topics i like to discuss and did want to jump in, eric, i'll direct this first questioned you pick in terms of adoption seen so far, so in 2017 the overall adoption rates for electrified vehicles globally in the one, 1.5% range of total light duty vehicle sales. despite the fact virtually all the major oems have announced reallocation of the production, new models to come with electric vehicle options, the outlook is
still a relatively low overall penetration for the next several years, perhaps even for the next decade. what is holding people back? what is holy consumers back and adoption rates to that low level so far? >> if you think of of the consr think of a choice between ev and a conventional vehicle there's typically three things to think about that limit their adoption. when his cost, the other is ranged from anxiety and the third would be charging issues. on the cost side most of the cost is associated with the battery. as the focus of research and development. most automotive oems think they will reach cost parity with vehicles in a few years. the range anxiety is in part a hangover from the first generation of evs. had limited range, i think it's less of your problem now a special in an urban environment with modern evs in the news will be coming out. finally charging, we heard about that earlier this morning. charging infrastructure is coming along. for people who own an easy the
charge of their own home overnight that's not an issue. people taking a long trip, and intercity trip that can be a challenge and you need to plan that trip carefully and think about it. in the longer term as we think more about significant ev penetration then you have a coupling of the transportation sector with electrical grid in the wake that's pretty comforted and we need to think about that and plan for the carefully, not only increase demand due to the electric vehicles on the grid but also their potential benefits in terms of being capable for grid scale storage. finally, i think to make this a sustainable electric vehicle future we are going have goingo do a better job than we currently do know recycling lithium batteries and their components because it's really at a very low percentage right now. we have to do better. >> in terms of the sf and the contributions that bsf is focused on both from a legacy perspective, the emissions
catalyst, a rich legacy there,, but more recently terms of advanced battery materials, research for the electromobility future that we are envisioning. what would be a -- is a realistic that we can expect the majority of cars to be electrified in our lifetime or even approaching 100% or is that very far off in the future? >> providing sustainable solution to the automotive industry, that's the core value to bsf. we are the pioneers in providing mobile admission catalyst to the car industry. our products since introduction have helped to avoid release of roughly 1,000,000,000 1 billiof pollutants into the atmosphere, but now as you look to the projections on how many cars we will have by 2025, estimate around 1.5 billion cars globally on the road. we have more stringent emission regulations commit and more demand for fuel economy so there needs to be different solutions
in the future and immobility is directly leading into that. what bsf is doing, we are actively doing research and production of the so-called -- those are the materials which are coded on the battery cell. they are at the heart of innovation for the batteries because they determine all the parts we've been discussing. they determine the range, the lifetime, the cost. we are developing new materials that enable the carmakers to increase the range of electric car from today maybe 150 150-200 miles per charge, up to 400-6 and a miles per charge in the future. we looking for recharging times 15 minutes and what want to gee cost down. this we can do by optimizing the metals which were using and so on and so forth. when we will see 100% electrification on the roads?
that's the very difficult question actually and if you look at what happened in the past 2016 with 750,000 electric cars, the projections from the conservative estimates that by 2025 with eight to 10 million electric cars, more maybe 50 men between 25. looking at 80 million cars nine cars sold over all. actually a long way to go to have when hundred% electrification but with innovation we try to make this happen as quick as possible. >> eric, i think we did some of the challenges you laid out of somebody of the speakers to be laid up in terms of getting to this email build the future. no one company, no one entity can solve all those challenges on their own. how do you see the current state of the public to private partnership to address the challenges? is there more work to do? >> i think the answer is a resounding yes. this is an area of technology where the solutions are needed are real technical challenges
and a think there's a great interaction between the public and the private sector. on the public side, i represent the east, this one from, there's a wide range of activity, fundamental vitriol material at to being done for energy storage research, a lot of programs and, of course, the ones i'm partial to in rd programs. to complement what heiko said, there's innovation on the anode side and on the electrolyte. we are seeing new chemistries, new materials that incorporate silicon in the graphite and on electrode side, electrolyte side, i think the most compelling and exciting advance is solid-state electrolyte. we could envision and a not-too-distant future and i will say how distant that is, a fully solid-state lithium ion battery which would be game change in terms of energy density, safety, eliminating the flammable electrolyte, and really reducing the amount of
material used to protect the battery. >> so heiko, back to you. clearly in the united states we are an innovation leader when it comes to the automotive market but when you think about electromobility in particular, in many ways we are tied to catch up with some of our asian counterparts in this industry. i'm thinking china, korea, japan. what will it take for the u.s. to really emerge as an innovation leader in this space for the long-term? >> that's exactly the question. u.s. abuse industry needs to decide to want to be part of that race, yes or no. it is led by asia and especially by china. europe is picking up quickly because the regulations imposed on the carmakers. in the u.s. the market is developing slow at the moment so this is what we clearly see. what's needed to change it? basf are prepared to serve the interest, tilting up global production footprint. we start with battery materials
production plant in ohio. we formed a joint venture in japan. we announced another joint venture in the u.s. to strengthen our manufacturing footprint on the ground. last month we announced our plans to build also production plant in europe. we have a global coverage of this industry and also our research labs are distributed around the globe to respond to. what happened in the u.s., we are providing the technical solutions to address the concern from the end-user with range and everything but the cost is still a topic. to really get over the hurdle and to really make it attractive for the end-users to buy such a car, we need to think about how we can support this industry. there so much money to be spent starting from the metal mining, producers like basf, the carmakers need to invest heavily to make this whole industry happen.
there is nothing wrong with putting some government policies to get over the hump. exactly the same happens with emission catalyst. why can we freezer outside? because government policies to regulate emissions. why not do the same as e-mobility? >> it sounds like a matter speed is i just want to make a point i forgot to make in my previous question, which is the innovation pipeline is very robust. i talked about the public funding for research but the uptake of that research is incredible in this area. the small companies that is supported with innovative, new electro technologies, they are beating down the doors, the automotive oems are beating down the doors so there's a real demand for improved technology in this area. basf is a part of that. >> so it sounds proximity to customer is very important, working on innovation vital, right? and also a role for government that we can see in the future.
that would support this development. >> absolutely. >> ten minutes go buys off the? i like to thank you very much for your insight and join in thinking eric and heiko. >> thank you. [applause] >> for a new look at urban mobility, please welcome lei zhang, director of the national transportation center at the university of maryland, as well as the project lead, to lead the conversation please welcome journalist susan saulny. [applause] >> thank you. good morning again. >> good morning. >> thanks so much bring it to does but this was exciting new app called -- you with a project lead what is being developed at the university of maryland.
it's supposed to make us smarter and more efficient travelers. how does it work? >> so i'm very glad to be here this morning and we just saw lyft and uber. as it although mobility is moving into more of a service demand and very often it's very confusing for an average traveler, myself included, to try to understand all these different old and new options to get around the city. the first that was hey, we really need sort of a search engine for automobile services out there so that we could start making all these interesting connections. the goal really is to both help individual travelers to find smarter travel mode, departure talk about choices but also more and partly at same time when we have all these different mobility services on same platform we actually use personalized and dynamic incentives to nudge the
travelers to get them to want to be able to try these exciting new options. for the system as a whole we would be able to reduce congestion, energy use and emissions. that's really what made is really excited about this new app and the people to actually do have inner d.c. baltimore. >> let's see how it works. i have some screenshots of my commute this morning. i came over as you can see the united states capital over to this gallery. can you walk us through what we are saying? >> many of you probably are familiar with google maps, some of the other options to help you get around the city. it is fairly similar. what's unique about this technology a later on, you're looking at a trip planner at this point. we are all different kinds of modes included in the d.c. baltimore area. key people know how many transit providers that are in our region? in the broader d.c. baltimore
region? take a guess. there are more than 90 transit agencies read. we took a lot of time to get all their services and also including uber, ridesharing, and all kinds of options, walking, biking. you're looking at origin, destination. you're looking at i want to plan a trip. let's see what happens. searching for different modes right over there. we are based on, in background we are fortunate that because with all the real-time text data about how the system operates. we have models that predict in real-time what is the travel time, what is the energy use and what is the missions for every single user and for every possible option of it. initially we are showing you three options and there's really artificial intelligence model. what's interesting here is we have a travel behavior prediction model customized for
every single user. susan, a longer you use it we learn more about your preference of which mode you like to use, and then we will custom designed these initial options to show you. in this case if you choose to drive you get your in about 12 2 minutes. if you choose to bike it takes a little longer, 60 minutes, given your departure time. but as you see we would actually give you a lot more incentives to actually use transportation modes in this particular case that reduced congestion and energy use. the bottom line is righteous. >> driving i get three points. walking i would get 108 points. sorry i didn't make the best choice. i only got three points. >> which is fine. the next time you use it you will probably will start seeing something different given that you chose not to go that route. we learn about your past behavior and try to customize the incentives to make it even more effective.
>> you also show how much fuel will be used on each trip. >> right. it summonses i still want to drive can we don't want this to be just a mode choice at. let's be honest, vast majority are driving. if you insist on driving for now, that's fine and we may recommend a different departure time to nudge you to travel during the more off-peak hours which is also good for us. >> if i left at 1:08 i could've had 15-point. >> we do want you to go out. we are hoping you don't go out when it what else is going out for lunch. maybe later and will give you more incentive. >> what can i do with these .? >> that's an awesome question. we're really trying to view an echo system for this. we need partners. in this case we actually a very fortunate that initially u.s. department of transportation and later on, for he recently actually u.s. department of
energy, the arpa-e program, the arpa-e agency has a program called transnet. we really got a boost from these federal supports that developed the technology and later on at this point what we're doing is to partner with state, local agency as well as the private sector to provide incentives. so the way i look at it, i know it's a long answer but i will get there. the way i look at this is, historically we've used a lot of supply-side solutions to try to address transportation problems in our cities, and rural areas. when we realize that's not good to get us out of the problem, we start competing was called high occupancy vehicle lanes, try to get people to do righteous. we spent more than $100 billion across nation, 20 years, to get
people to ride shared. what happened? ridesharing in contrast decreased from 20% to about 7%. in the same period of time. with an essay supply-side solution is not good, but hey let's start taking a more serious look at the demand-side solution where we can use all these new technologies and emerging technologies such as fixed data, artificial intelligence and cheaper cloud computing, , let's see if we can really make a demand-side solution to work well with the existing infrastructure. that's what it is. incentives, as to what you can do with incentives right now, there is a reward page. when you accumulate points you could actually use a chance for gift cards at this point. our goal is when we rolled out this for all the users in our region, you would be able to use for transit passes and use it to call for uber pool or use for scooter if we could integrate this with all these interesting
services out there to get people report they deserve. there's also a component to make monetary incentive even more effective. >> what was your personal motivation to do this work? was a saving the planet or saving our sanity, easing congestion in the city or all of the above? >> certainly all of the above, but to put a a personal note on it, we are university professors and we are always looking to do something new. i think that's what we have to do in addition to teaching the next generation of engineers. so with this one looking at is, for many, many decades, many, many cities across the world have always had what is called a travel demand management program. the idea is could good we use incentives? couldn't find different ways to get people to use more energy efficient modes and to do things to help reduce congestion.
but all these programs are viewed on fairly ancient technology. what really motivates me personally and also my team collectively is really to find a way to leverage all these exciting and emerging technology as well as the emergence of all these new mobility services altogether to produce a new solution that probably can get to where this group and the broderick unity there want to be, like you said a greener planet, less congestion. wouldn't that be wonderful? >> we will go to the audience in just a moment. first, how would you rate the infrastructure in our area? say the best way your app suggests me to get some work is to bike and turns out there's no bike lane, or to walk and there are no great sidewalks. there's no pedestrian bridge were i need across the highway. those things impede the goal, and have you found we are at a
good level and okay level? is there much room for improvement? >> you are right on the supply-side there still a lot to want for it. even though our focus is on the demand-side come out tell you a little story on that. when this was presented to the secretary of one of the state department of transportation, i will not announce which particular one, the question i got was hey, this is interesting, i like the fact you are providing these customize incentives to make programs and investment more effective for reducing congestion and energy use here but tell me, how much incentive budget and putting into this for you to be able to help me reduce congestion, the particular phrase eu's was congestion and that particular case, by 10%. in my entire state, which is a very congested state. i did a quick peculation and i said hey, probably around $20 million. he said that's a big number, to
put $20 $20 million into a prom like this. i say, look at it this. you spend more than $2 billion a year into the infrastructure to try to address the same issues. looks like things are getting worse. why don't we give a try on this newer solution? but he was skeptical. people have the right to be skeptical about new technology like this. which is exactly why right now we are focusing on really demonstrating the actual real-world performance of this technology in washington, d.c. and the baltimore area so we really benefit from a lot of good partnership. if i can go back to that same dot secretary with the real order resolved on a bigger scale, right now we're have 35,000 registered users but if i can show exactly how each dollar he or she interest in the technology can reduce congestion, energy use, that's
probably going to be a lot more powerful and will help scale up the technology and make bigger impact. >> he had scaled up one city internationally, correct? patient. >> yes. if people complain about traffic congestion in d.c., try to code to the other -- you will feel better. >> let's take it to the audience. does anyone have a question? no, okay. i have one last for you. what is your commit like and how did you get here today? >> great. my typical commute is from maryland to college park, maryland,. >> do you use the app? >> of course. i tested all the time to make sure there are no bugs for our users. it's interesting because it is a traditional -- this is a great example because there is an existing commuter program for me because if i carpal was summoned, university of maryland i have a great partner who
happens to be my wife. we both work at university of maryland. if we carpool we would actually get ten dollars per trip with existing incentive program. because we both live together and commute in same direction. the great program great program but no issue is that if i'm using transit right now, i will be -- start driving and carpool for my wife for $10 ten dollarp if i'm already carpooling i would still get ten dollars per trip. but with this incentrip what to do is use that same resources to actually convince the choice of writers to carpool more for those who are driving solo to carpool more. really use the funds available to get the most people to choose green abodes and departure time. right now we sometimes carpool to catch up with each other, to
answer you question how a commute. but today for this particular event about to say that i walked all the way here. [laughing] literally. >> one question there. >> does it at integrate with the federal credit or commute credit that you can also get when you use alternative modes of transportation as well? >> thank you for the first question from the audience. so for instance,, , the agency will work very close ways in washington, d.c. region is a commuter connection program. there actually is a body that actually use of resources from federal, state and local levels to provide commuting credits to encourage this kind of behavior. we are very proud to have a partner like that to leverage some of the existing resources to help us really get started. >> a lot of encouraging ideas. please help me in thanking lei zhang.
[applause] >> to discuss impact of a event for hq tonight please welcome katie cristol, chair of the arlington county board, and jeff marootian, director of the district department of transportation to lead the conversation, here is nicole flatow. [applause] >> good morning. so we get a fun one today. as mentioned we have jeff and katie here who represent not only the jurisdiction that won the bid but actually two of the three jurisdictions technically there were in the running for amazon headquarters. as you may know, northern virginia was one of two jurisdictions that was the lucky winner of the second. amazon headquarters will be talk about today. they won half of the 50,000 jobs that were initially going to go to just one lucky city, yet half
going to long island city but, of course, in the 20 finalists ever very publicly and sometimes vehemently advocating for the own jurisdiction, there were three particular parts of d.c. that were represented and that was the d.c. metro area, d.c. virginia and montgomery county. i want to start out by asking you and i will start with you, jeff, how you think about the virtues and limitations of amazon having picked the crystal city region in particular, and how to what is compared in terms of infrastructure preparedness having picked the district? >> first, let me sit it's great to be here to talk about this. we are very excited, thrilled for our neighbors in virginia. we think this is a win for the region and highlights the importance of the work under the leadership of a muriel bowser we've been committed to doing in the district. what we did last year in preparation as a region was put our heads together with maryland and virginia to talk about the
kinds of projects that we knew we needed to collectively work together on delivering to make the region more attractive. what we've seen so far in the past year is a real delivery on some of those commitments. we put our heads together as a region to raise the capital for the improvements to our metro system, which we know are critical. a lot of that work was catalyzed by the conversation of having amazon come into the region. we've got several other big infrastructure projects in the district and with our regional neighbors that have been critical as a part of that conversation and it highlights some of our achievements in that area. >> katie, what about for you, are you surprised that you landed amazon? what about the particular region in which it is located? >> thank you so much for the opportunity to talk about this. as i was mentioning, infrastructure is in and of the game when you think about anderson. our potential in arlington county but also the region to absorb the the 25,000 jobs oven
or 15 years while mitigating the impacts to the quality of life and that is often issue of congestion around transportation. one of the reasons we believe crystal city was such a strong contender in such a good place to be able to absorb these employees is that we have the infrastructure existing. the transportation is an incredibly important piece. crystal city is one of the most transit oriented places we argue on entire eastern seaboard. of course with the petrol station, also a bus rapid transit system that connects us to neighbors in alexandria, which bus schism of her own as well as wmata, connection to virginia rail which brings employees from sparse up as fredericksburg and increasing wheel better connectivity to the air resource of national airport. airport. the transportation infrastructure was a and the private infrastructure was if it's a something we posted about obesity a vacancy rate as high as 20% and crystal city largely a result of base realignment and
closure about a decade ago. we had the private office building, the private infrastructure to either absorb some of these employees in the first couple of ways in existing buildings or to provide redevelopment potential opportunities to create those new buildings around the headquarters over the next decade. >> jeff, you started to allude a bit to the planning that was done before the wind had even be an out which of course was, amongst many jurisdictions over anticipating essentially getting amazon. can you tell him the extent to which, both of you, were involved in the respective did i do for your own jurisdiction or in your case 80 for multiples, and to what extent you are able to articulate the interests of its own jurisdictions at the outset versus playing catch-up at this point as to maybe what you are committed to and what you will be getting in return? >> sure. i can say from a transportation perspective, we spent a lot of time really highlighting some of the projects that we had that
were even the pipeline are currently in development that we felt would be critical to attracting a company like amazon. we have several big bridge renovation projects we've been successful in the district and reducing the number structurally deficient bridges we have. currently our large is what is frederick douglass memorial bridge which is half the billion-dollar project which has a direct connection for the city with our neighboring jurisdictions. those kinds of projects when opportunity for us to showcase the work we're doing and also talk about the connectivity we are bringing to the region over the upcoming years. >> embedded in your question is a a good sentiment that my colleagues and i as elected officials in arlington county sought to establish as a guiding principle, which investments would make quote for amazon come in investments we've been making what we knew were critical to create a thriving david around crystal city as well as connectivity to the region. the credit for the day-to-day negotiations and the herculean task of preparing a response to
that request for proposal goes s for economic development team led by victor haskins and christina in arlington county. we had involvement of only being very clear, particularly as we saw pretty wild headlines about tax breaks and incentives being very clear we were interested in only very minimal grants sent directly to amazon or tax breaks, and is simply to give an incentive package that would focus in the reinvestment and crystal city and in arlington county. that's what you see and a package. it is the opportunity, about 360 million of investment in transportation in arlington county, a second station entrants for crystal city which will be critical come this transit way and others. that was the nature of our involvement with setting up prior to that we sought to invest back yourself and back to the committee which will also benefit. >> what about some of the greatest challenges you anticipate, and thinks that
perhaps, you at the county level you don't have a direct affect and/or voice. >> absolutelywe achieved an astonishing accomplishment this year across all three metro jurisdiction with dedicated funny for the person in the systems history. to say just a word with that getting to into the weeds, the virginia solution came at a really heavy cost to local jurisdictions. essentially it redirected and guided gutted funding we use in arlington alexandria to do things like improve pedestrian access, bikes, the things of provide that last mile connectivity. where facing a significant funding challenge. we saw significant road funding stripped which is critical to the outer jurisdiction being able to provide that part of infrastructure. i worry greatly but the future of transit funding. not for nothing have a looming transit capital fiscal cliff in the commonwealth of virginia which could affect our commuter rail system and local buses as
well. we are not even a little bit out of the woods when it comes to the investment in transportation. the thing we continue to think about is housing which is may be less often talked about part of infrastructure but this region has not kept up with the demands of her growing workforce or housing. amazon will likely not caused a crisis because we have with industry to. making sure we have a policy tools and, frankly, the capital to create not only the committed affordable housing that would be critical to keeping our lower lw income and working-class neighbors in the community, and, frankly, just adding enough housing to make sure we can keep up the demand of our workforce, our aging senior population, and others who are seeking to stay in this region and make it home. >> let's stay on housing for one moment, thank you for quoting yourself. i was going to cite the same quote myself. i saw a project of this week, a number of them that arlington alone will need 8000, 9000 new
units projected at an event. you'll be a significant event of housing in arlington and the region. understand you have some new housing funding coming your way. particularly at the state level. how do you anticipate being able to execute on actually getting housing built in the time crunch that you have? >> so first for the purpose of the framing, what i know is when you look at the region will be seen in terms of job growth, the region has been adding about 45,000 jobs a year for the past decade or so. when you look at one of 5000 jobs over ten or 15 years, we're talking in the realm of maybe a 5% bump or boost. i don't believe this location about is going to drive or should drive housing decisions but i do think it present laser focused and get a spotlight on what the imperative has been or needs to be for this region to let housing and that's true for arlington county.
so to summarize, we will have a two-pronged approach consistent with our adopted policies. we have a plan to add thousands of housing units in crystal city consistent with the sector plan was adopted back in 2008. we have really aggressive plant an existing policies, affordable housing ordinance and investment fund that we've used to create committed affordable units which is to say those units that accept public financing to be created in exchange for staying committed at rates that are affordable for neighbors using making 60% of the low compared with the housing grant. the challenge with the development of those committed affordable units was a very high cost of land in arlington county and the region has always been capital. so in that regard we are really excited about this new capital investment from the state. we hope some of her private sector partners, amazon will now be one, will join us in needing that capital chose we can create come at the end of day what are stable homes for our neighbors
who were helping support the local economy. >> if i could just add. this workforce in affordable housing has been huge priority for our mayor and we spent over the past four years upwards of $500 million to our trust fund. bringing that opportunity and that something that through our programs we will continue to do going forward. >> and katie, like how are you building affordable housing into the overall infrastructure that you just articulated? >> absolutely. i think the notion of committed affordable units being close to transit as always been a key priority. i can't take credit for it. my predecessor on arlington county board and events but idea for a long time. so integrating housing planning a transportation planning generally and with a specific lens to committed affordable projects has been corporate pcs in the crystal city sector plan we had. there are ways in which these things are complementary. we know that building committed
affordable units close to transit dramatically lowers the need for parking in those buildings. entering that allows more of a units to be built more cost-effectively because if there's anybody in the development business you know and for parking is one of the most expensive part of developing housing. so you see that in sort of policy examples large and somalia way those both of transit oriented development and affordable housing are truly knitted together. >> jeff, speaking of parking, so amazon themselves have stayed i believe that they are not intending for their workers to drive to the new headquarters or lease the plan discourage it in part by limiting the amount of parking their building and it headquarters. so that puts some additional pressure on the public transit system. wmata has gone through some troubles including lower ridership even as the population of d.c. in particular has
increased. it's probably not a given that another increase in population necessary solves the problems arguably. of course could make them work. what have you planned to make some faster and get improvements to the metro system. >> was sure. i should take step back and say as was reflected in previous panels, the city and across the region we've embraced a number of new mobility options to complement our overall transit system as we heard about on the earlier panels as it relates to scooters. we look at all of those things really as a system for which people can get to and from work, home, and from other services as well. as has been said, we spent significant time thinking about the capital program at wmata and how to make a real system itself better. the general manager has recently proposed some operational changes that we are supportive of as a way to increase
reliability, to bring that service to a place where people feel a sense of confidence that they can get to and from where they need to be. we are also thinking about an important component of the wmata system which is bus service. in the city where developing bus only lanes, priority bus lanes for our city to allow for wmata services to move quicker. we are working with wmata to ensure that they are exploring technology that makes the user experience more simplified. all of those things combined are a part of our strategy. it works well with what we're doing to support the amazon effort, but truthfully these are things we've been very focused on as as a priority for our ci. >> ridership and the declines in ridership have been and even across the metro metal lunch. we do have some areas and to the district has its own points where there's crowding on the metro. there's a lack of capacity. crystal city, pentagon city not one of those areas. when you measure the entrances
and exits to and from those station, , crystal city of pentagon city, it is down by about a third since its peak in 2009. in 2009. we estimate between metrorail, metro bus and her own local system with the capacity to bring on about 50-70,000 were daily trips. adding more writers to the system in this part of the system could help wmata. we know one of the reasons public subsidies have become so burdensome on us as the locality is the ridership has declined. the idea of returning those writers to areas the areas were missing big drop-offs, will we get capacity could help stabilize the operational funding of the system. >> this may be my last question, but i want to ask you were specifically also about some of the more localized transportation questions. even getting down to things like how are their plans to the crystal city and the surrounding region more walkable? i know when plan that was discussed is creating a bridge between the airport, reagan
national airport, and crystal city. what other types of things is the region planning to do to make the area more amenable to other forms of transportation besides driving? and to what extent do both of you get to weigh in on that decision? >> we announced earlier this week a project we're working on with our colleagues in virginia and with the federal railroad administration. that would be a bridge connectivity for bikes and pedestrians, in addition to opening up the prospect of commuter rail which is something we think is critical to our region. this for us is just another opportunity to collaborate on those things and a nowhere having discussions with other types of projects both with virginia and maryland as we see this as an opportunity to connect in as many forms, as many modes of transportation of possible. >> we are thrilled about that long bridge opportunity as well here i would say what's exciting about this amazon opportunity and working with our state
partners is that it has created a real chance to rely some projects that might have been more aspirational, shall we say, before the bridge, the pedestrian bridge it's an extraordinary idea when you think about its potential not only for business or residence of that area to be able to walk directly to the airport rather than to have to take their vehicle around to navigate that way. but another similar dish in a project is bringing route one, integrated as a former resident of crystal city, it can feel like crossing the rubicon to get from one side of crystal city to the other because of that very kind of midcentury idea of the elevated highway bisecting the community. so the chance to bring that to grade which are state partners are committed to do, would be extraordinary in trading a sense of one crystal city, one pentagon city. our business improvement
business district points out we are virginia's largest walkable downtown. so making few more walkable through the leveling of those elevated highways through the connectivity airport and, frankly,.net and bold step that aren't it has been committed to for decades now, which is improving streetscapes, curbs, street trees, retail and provide special interest to those commitments will all join with the bigger infrastructure partner, bigger infrastructure projects to create a sense of a walkable neighborhood for both business tenants as well as residents and neighbors. >> thank you. there's a lot more that could be the basis for some audience questions, so now going to see if anyone has any. yes, over here. >> was interested to about amazon discouraging people from driving. people are still going to drive. i mean, does government have any carrots and sticks to stop that?
because people are still going to drive, and the roads are tight. >> that's a great question. i'd be happy to take a first step. first of all, great to see you. the government doesn't need to provide it. its congestion. we know northern virginia at some of the worst finish and is probably true for the region. it has become about carrots. how to make transit more attractive as an alternative, making a more reliable come as you are mentioning, safe, on-time. and one seat rides. we have lots of experience in arlington county working with developers and with office tenants to think about what we call transportation demand management. so parking minimums are the piece of it but it's also things, for example, like what will the building owner or of e tenant offer their employees in terms of transit benefits? white is a package that looks like? how to build in when you're
building a new building the immunity is like a shower, the bike racks that might enable someone who lives closer to for biking? and then of course it is the biggest issue of all is locating your office buildings close to transit. no matter how well intentioned somebody might be to bike or by public transit or mass transit to work, if it's going to require them to walk a mile and half in d.c. humidity or cold, that's unlikely parts of talking about the location of this headquarters is frankly noted on top of a metro station, nearly on top of the basis virginia station in the virginia system. as well as the buses and metro lines will give folks those opportunities, and then against to the site planning process with a chance to get even more granular. the physical communities, the benefits that will be offered to employees of them take advantage of those carrots so they don't have to spend the time and are
congestion. >> i would echo exactly that, that it's our job. we want to invite as many accessible, affordable options. we know people have the choice and want to make sure we are creating as much of that opportunity as possible and letting folks know what that choice is. >> i think will take one more quick question. the mic is heading this way. >> yes, thank you. i'm an urban designer. my question is about what are your plans with regard to the realignment of the freight train? we've been talking about this forever. it seems like with amazon building in it is a great opportunity to actually do that and use for other modes of transportation. thank you. >> the long bridge project we're just talking about is in part the freight project. as was talked about on earlier
panels, the movement of freight and good to something that continues to be critical for us as a region. having amazon here gives us the opportunity to continue that conversation both from a real perspective but also from a commercial delivery perspective? violet important for us as a city. >> i do think amazon provides exactly as you asking or indicating a renewed focus on that long bridge tracking operative which is critical for the freight. it's good for movement of people. we know amtrak avails itself of the bridge as well. the virginia railway express is a commuter rail that runs on the freight lines. with our frederick brooks line it's on the seeds extract. creating that expansion creates more capacity for all of the systems and eventually realizing our aspirations of having commuter rail across jurisdiction. it is a a project that is mass,
interjurisdictional, public private, very expensive. so i know that amazon's to say is helping us also focus, we've seen some of it on even in the last few weeks. it's very much a priority i know of our government for june and the direct of the department of real and public transportation for the commonwealth and ensure it is as well for our d.c. partners. >> thank you. i know i'm looking forward to seeing how this hands out. good luck to you both. >> thank you. [applause] >> is welcome congressman peter defazio, ranking member of the house committee on infrastructure and transportation. please welcome back to the stage kathleen koch. [applause] >> welcome fellow congressman. i guess i can't call you cherub official for another month.
i think it's fascinating even before democrats took back the house, around washington the word was hey, infrastructure, that's one thing we can all agree on. we can move forward on. the president wants it. nothing happened. how will things be different in 2019? will you move a package? >> unfortunately, the people they brought in initially proposed things that the republicans even with what? what are you talking about? going to do asset recycling? somehow magically put more burden on the states? >> so that was the poison killed the killed. >> it was ridiculous. that's changed i think the president really wants to do an infrastructure package and i need his help because will have to do some revenues and we're going to need him to show people that it's okay to do a little
bit of revenue. my proposal, penny for progress, it's at de minimis approach that i thought even the most weak kneed member of congress for the senate could support. >> a gas tax? >> are scared of the gas tax and obama would never go there. this just indexes gas and diesel taxes. i will go into the complexity of it but we can then projected income and we can bond. we have figured out we could bond to the point of philly in the whole of the trust fund and adding $17 billion a year for new capacity come for resilience, for state, , a good repair and all the things we need to be dealing with. i think that's a pretty de minimis solution. it's up to ways and means but i'm going to refine my proposal, introduce it and give it to them and hopefully they will like it and i will propose it to the white house. >> i don't know if everyone in the room knows history of the gas tax. it hasn't been raised since 1993, one to five years. at least on the national level
that states have been doing it, correct? >> over 30 states have now done it. there have been no detrimental political consequences. in fact, an incoming minority leader kevin mccarthy thought it was a brilliant strategy to keep the california seat and turnout republicans is repeal the gas tax increase in california. he cut his head handed to him. the new governor of minnesota rant on a ten-cent gas tax increase. the government elected michigan democrat said fix the damn roads. so people get it, they're tired of being stuck in congestion, target blowing out tires in potholes. the commercial folks who are we registering from, they know the cost in terms of delayed delivery and more wear and tear on vehicles can we wasted 3.1 billion gallons of fuel. talk about climate change. wasting 3.1 billion a year with people stuck in traffic wasting time, , wasting fuel. people want solutions. >> we are already paying a
price. >> huge. texas transportation institute said about $140 $140 billion fe lost productivity, wasted fuel and wear and tear. >> so tax hikes are doing, you have to combine tasha will have to be budget cuts, borrowing? >> there would be borrowing but every year we would calculate the income room the prior year because it's not exactly will depend upon basically fuel economy and construction contemplation but we would adjust the amount of bonds issued each year and we would show they will be paid for. we are not creating new unpaid for that unlike the tax cuts, but real investment, real jobs, real boost to the economy with no new unpaid for debt. >> what would the package look like? you have address how we're paying for it. >> we've got to build in
resilience for climate change. our new techniques for green infrastructure. we have to bring things up to the state of repair. we had $100 billion to bring up transit to state the covert peer, let alone get people new transit options. my proposal with both deal with state that could repair and would have more money for new options for people, , new partnerships with the states. .. spend the money and the good thing about transitives, we have the strongest buy america requirement of any part of the federal government, so it's not just, you know, construction jobs. it's engineering, it's design, it's high tech, it's
manufacturing. it's all those things would get a boost. >> you mentioned making our infrastructure more resilient. do you have any thoughts on the warnings and national climate assessment that just came out regarding infrastructure in particular? >> well, on my side of the aisle, we think this is a real problem, unlike some on the other side of the aisle. there's been some controversy over how we deal with it. we are going to deal with it seriously and we can do it through existing committees or we can have a collect committee. any of those things will address it. in infrastructure we have to look at designs that are both more acceptable at the beginning but also are going to be resilient to either inundation or earthquake. that's a big concern in my part of the country. we are rebuilding and building things to withstand a very significant earthquake, so we have got to anticipate these things. wildfires, you know. there's a whole host of things with climate change we have to
deal with in terms of both transportation infrastructure and other forms of infrastructure, buildings, et cetera. >> speaking of disasters, our infrastructure has taken a pretty hard hit this year from whether it's hurricanes or the recent earthquake you're mentioning in alaska, the cascadia area, wildfires. then we have the situation with the campfire in the paradise area, where they think infrastructure, pg & e infrastructure may have caused that. what can congress do to help make sure we do have safer, more modern infrastructure? >> well, actually, when we passed legislation reauthorizing the federal emergency management agency last year, we put a new mandate on them -- previously they would say oh, you had that damage, okay, here's your money to put it back the way it was. >> just the way it was.
>> we said no, take these other things into account and rebuild it so it will withstand the next catastrophe. i was down in puerto rico with a number of members and their infrastructure obviously was a disaster. it wasn't very good before the hurricane and again, the argument over whether to rebuild a grid that's going to fail again or are we going to build a grid that can withstand this. that hurricane was so phenomenal and they will be that way in the future because of climate change. wind farms were wiped out, solar farms were wiped out, even the things that were supposedly for the future, to help the oil economy change, those have to be built in a different way, too. >> what are your thoughts on public/private partnerships and how important those are going to be as we move forward in renewing and improving our infrastructure? >> well, there are certain projects that lend themselves to it, projects that can create revenue. they are generally limited to, i
mean, we held actually a bipartisan panel, met for six months and a few years ago on transportation infrastructure committee, we tend to be less partisan than other committees. at the beginning, the republicans are it's the solution and at the end they went okay, a little bit, and basically the conclusion was maybe 10% to 12% of our infrastructure needs can be met through p3. the other 88% or 90% will have to have real investment by the states, local jurisdictions and the federal government. p3s are a tool in the toolbox and it's one that we want to use. as i was mentioning to you before, you talked about the baltimore-washington parkway. most people don't realize that's the responsibility of the united states park service. the park service which celebrated its centennial, has about $7 billion or $8 billion in unmet needs in the things people think of as parks. so my idea with that to me looks
like the governor of maryland wants it for free. no, let's turn that into a p3, bring it up to a state of good repair and use the revenue that comes in every year to do work in the parks, so there are creative ways i think to approach p3s that people will support. >> your own state of oregon is trying something creative. there's a little controversy. what about the mileage tax? how would that factor in, if at all? >> well, the vehicle miles traveled, we are on our third pilot now. this one has multiple options to see if it's more socially acceptable to people. there are some people, despite [ inaudible ] don't know they are located of every second of every day and they don't want the government to know where they are. the only fair way to do a vmt is if you are going to do vmt with individuals, would be with congestion pricing. shouldn't charge a farmer who has to drive 20 miles to the feed store the same per mile to use someone who jumps on 205 in portland and causes a backup.
we're not quite ready to go there yet. as i say, people say some people are happy to have the government know where they are. people in rural parts of my district, after you get the gun out of my cold hand, then you can track my vehicle. so not so much. it's a future, we are going to go there ultimately, especially as we have more penetration of vehicles that don't use gas or diesel. but we don't need to go there yet, because that's a very small percentage of vehicles and you know, we will convert to that at some point in the future, but i'm going to propose that we have a national vmt pilot, allow people to opt in and then you would get a rebate for it because we know how many miles you traveled and what kind of vehicle you have, or the estimated gas tax you would have paid. >> if you don't get a package through in 2019, in 2020,
campaign year hits, does that mean no go? does that stall everything? >> probably. most things grind to a halt in presidential years. i would hope we can get this done this year and as i say, our goal in the house is to have a bill done within six months and get it over to the senate, hopefully the senate can act a little more expeditiously than usual. we'll see. we just signed the coast guard bill at the white house yesterday. we sent it to the senate 18 months ago, i think. >> so democrats are willing to do a deal on infrastructure with the president, even if it gives him a victory to campaign on? >> we have plenty of other places to campaign against the president. infrastructure, you know, infrastructure is to the benefit of all the people in the united states of america, democrat, republican, independent, and we don't need that. we can deliver on that. he can't take -- he can take some credit but he sure as heck can't take total credit because they controlled everything and
did nothing. in fact, they proposed to cut infrastructure investment. >> before we go to the audience for questions, i would love to know just what is your number one infrastructure priority, right now, if you had a magic wand, all the resources that you needed, what would you fix first? >> well, we need the resources. i did get a provision in the last bill that said any new money allocated will go through existing programs and that's where we'll go in the short term, with a few tweaks. >> meaning what? >> well, we have, you know, when we do long-term bills, we fight over this between highways and transit, we fight over other policy issues. we wouldn't need to fight over policy issues to do a short-term large injection that would get us through, you know, october 1st, 2020 when we have to have a long-term bill, basically so we would have a short-term bill which has more funding, has a few tweaks to policy, then the
longer term bill which will be a little more directed in terms of policy and approaching smart infrastructure that can move traffic. how many times do you sit at a traffic light, there's no one coming. couldn't you have crowdsourcing and traffic lights are like change when there's no one on the other road? there's a pilot project, i think there's one in nevada and one going in in virginia. there's ways we could do, make the existing infrastructure carry people better while we invest in the new infrastructure. >> so a multi-step process. excellent. let's go to questions. the gentleman right here? >> what provisions do you see in the 2020 bill for walking and bike lanes? >> as you might remember in the last bill, the fast act, the republicans did not want to
continue the previous programs. we had safe rides to school and we had other dedicated funds that went into alternate modes, but we managed to actually preserve all of those and by renaming them and putting them in other places in the bill. i would like to go back to a more honest approach and a more directed approach to the states, because we did leave states the option to not do those sorts of alternate modes. that's the one compromise we had to do. my state is still fully investing, as are most, but there's a few that we'll just put the money over here in highways or whatever else. we've got to go back to something more directed. and i love safe rides to school. we got an obesity problem with kids. everything that we were doing, that was a great program. i rode some of those routes with kids in oregon. it was a great program. i want to bring it back.
>> did we have a question over here? thank you. >> good morning, congressman. thank you for being here. could you talk a little bit more about the funding and i know there's been some talk about earmarks. could you just address the issue of earmarks and upcoming congress, if that's going to be in play? >> got rid of those, didn't you? >> i didn't. the republicans did. i actually proposed reform of earmarks. i wrote a service transportation bill which obama killed, and i had reformed the earmark process, which would be, it's congressionally directed investment. do we think all of the wisdom on how to better serve the people of your district or your state, if you're a senator, comes from d.o.t. in d.c. or your state d.o.t.? no. if we have a totally transparent process with people who are more
accountable than the secretary of transportation or more accountable than the bureaucrats who run your state agency, you might get some projects done that they're ignoring. i think congressionally directed spending in a fully transparent way, the way i reformed it was a, you had to submit your projects online, transparently, with your name attached, and the word project is generally stuck in by the senate and don't have names attached. secondly, you had to show that you had local support, had letters of support. third, it had to be consistent with but not funded by the state transportation improvement plan, and fourth, you had to sign an affidavit that you have absolutely no fiduciary interest in that project. i had i think it was somewhere over 415 members of congress submitted projects, they submitted projects ten times greater than what we were going to fund. so-called earmarks were always a small portion of directed spending. technically, an earmark is something the appropriators do
that isn't authorized. that's what an earmark is. but the republicans broadly banned everything to a point where sometimes we had to do things ridiculous. i had some unique federal land in my district that are forested lands and we needed to make some changes that the republican greg wall and i agreed on and they said no, it's just in one state, you can't do that. how stupid is that? it was a rule adopted by the republican conference. it was nonsenseical and i don't think we need that rule. >> all right. any further questions? one here. in the middle. >> the chairman proposed a package to improve finances to the highway trust fund that included a direct hit on electrification programs in this country to raise revenue. your proposal seems a little bit different. what would you do differently as chairman to help electrify the
transportation economy? >> well, you know, electrification, obviously right now we have a deal with charging stations and the ability of charging stations to be able to get people to purchase electric vehicles. tesla now has an electric truck which will be phenomenal. so we actually, in my region of the country, we have investment done by a federal agency. they actually paid for some of the initial electrification and it also goes to electrification by incentivizing truck stops to put in facilities so people have to idle their diesels at night and can return their internal heaters and those sorts of things. they are talking about solar panels on trucks. there's a whole host of things that can be done in the transportation modes that will help facilitate electrification. the grid is not the
responsibility of my committee, that's energy and commerce so i don't have any grand thoughts. obama talked a lot about the smart grid. i'm not quite sure how smart it is or what we did to move in that direction. there was supposedly some investment. i don't know what it did. >> we have time for maybe one more question. over here. >> thank you, congressman. i'm just wondering, are you making any plans with regard to the whole idea of an infrastructure bank? this is something we have been talking about for 30 years or more. >> well, there are those who advocate that as a solution. it's, yes, another tool and probably from my perspective in terms of transportation, a very minor tool. it makes more sense for water infrastructure, electricity grid, things that create
revenue, but for most transportation or particularly for transit, i'm not aware of any railway in the world, passenger railroad, that makes money. there are some that say they make money because in the uk, the government hangs the rails and owns the rails and virgin runs over it. yeah, they can make money. but if you have to maintain the rails or get the right-of-way, you're not going to be making money. it's not really applicable. it could be an additional tool. but we have public activity bonds already and it's been very successful, it actually makes money for the taxpayer, has had virtually very few failed projects. so it's not a high priority for surface transportation. it's a much higher priority for other forms of infrastructure. >> congressman, thank you so much for your many insights. thank you for joining us today. >> thank you. [ applause ]
>> the conversation about planning for low carbon future, please welcome tom fanning, seo of southern company, here with "the atlantic's" steve clemons. >> i hear you like to write and draw pictures and entertain. >> none of them will be relevant. >> let me ask you. i just learned a very interesting factoid about you which we have to get into. you on your very first time hosting, guest hosting "squawk box" -- >> many years ago. >> -- your first guest was who? >> the current president, donald trump. >> has that given you any special edge with him over the years? >> no. >> okay. let me ask you about the epa, largely at president trump's direction, has now announced it is rescinding these obama era
rules and regulations on new coal plants. new coal plants. so is southern company going to rush and build a bunch of new coal plants? >> well, look, we are on a trajectory to change the portfolio of generation in america. it goes way kind of beyond i think where southern company just is. we own the franchise utilities in the southeast that are competitive generation business has been all the way coast to coast, the carolinas to california. at one time we were the largest owner of solar in america. maybe now we are third or so because we are pivoting to wind, going to fuel cells, going to a variety of other things. here's the thing. we probably should explore how that transition of a generation is going to evolve. but there's another issue that i would want to draw later. maybe we should do that first. >> you had said, one of the things i want you to get into is that you said by 2050, your --
>> low to no. >> low to no carbon, which shocked your friends. >> probably all my predecessors at southern company before i became chairman, i'm just about to complete my eighth year, we are a little bit smaller but about the size from an energy production standpoint as the nation of australia. we are a big company. 70% of our energy came from coal. now that number is like 26%. gas was single digits. now it's about 50. renewables were zero. now it's about 10. and we're the last company standing in this wonderful country that is continuing to develop and build new nuclear. that is a national security imperative. so we are continuing on that. moreover, it's this kind of evolution of the model, this wonderful 100-year-old model that this nation has built
because technology is evolving, because customers are requiring it. the whole idea of the age of big iron is starting to dissipate and go away. what replaces it, i think to many in my industry, feels so threatening and yet, my view is as with almost any corporate strategy, is play offense relentlessly wherever you can, and our idea is not being able to keep the waves off the beach, how do we influence this new evolution of power generation, make, move and sell. it's not just generation. don't think solar panels -- think about microgrids and storage and switch gear and everything else. >> what is the model, the business model, that works, that gets you there in a real way? >> that's what i was going to draw. >> i suspected that. >> first, the transition of where we're going to go to get to low to no carbon is really
pretty cool. that is, largely speaking, the age of coal generation is dissipating. i think anybody would say that's clear if you look at our own energy that's happening, too. >> are you still on the christmas card list at the white house when you say that? >> as a matter of fact, i am. because there's a lot we can do, and i would argue the energy policy of this administration has actually been pretty good. energy policy done right in america gives us almost an unassailable advantage in a worldwide competitive economy. i also have a big role in the fed or that's winding up this year, too. three years chair of the atlanta fed, i was chair of the conference of chairs at the big fed, and i really enjoyed my time with that institution. but if you marry the idea of the big economy with energy policy, holy smokes. when we think about the blessings of energy that this country has relative to china, relative to europe, relative to any of our other competitors, if
we do this right and well, we will sustain gdp growth, create jobs, grow personal incomes and make american lives better for so many people. now, when i say that, it isn't just kilowatts and economic impact. when i talk about the imperative behind good energy policy in america today, it really goes with the rubric of clean, safe, reliable, affordable. for the first time ever, we came out of the gate in our history and said oh, low to no carbon by 2050, how in the world are we going to do that. there's a few things. one, you will see much bigger penetration in renewables. here's somebody from the southeast talking about renewables, are you kidding me? yet that's what you will see. >> how did you make it work on the affordable part? you have, i don't know for sure, but i think southern has among the lowest -- >> yes, we do. more than 10% -- oh, oh, oh. >> there's a cost in your
customers can't afford -- >> something like 46% of our customers make less than $46,000 a year. you just can't foist social costs on those people. these are people that day to day worry about making kitchen table economic decisions. how are we going to make, you know, our food budget and our home budget and education budget and health budget work. >> what's the innovation model? >> here's the thing. here's the thing. that's why you got to play offense relentlessly. you have got to invest in research and development. southern company is the only company in our industry that still does robust proprietary research and development. essentially the research and development coopt for our industry is electric power research institute. the former ceo is now on my board. we are the biggest funder. we really believe in inventing the future. so the idea of r & d, it's to take ideas that today are out of
the money and put the money in to make them in the money sometime in the future and actually create the solutions. that's what we're doing. so it will be improved renewables, solar and wind will be the workhorses there. it will be thinking about gas as a transition fuel into the future. we made a big bet -- >> don't forget to draw pictures. >> i will, i will. this is really something different. making a big bet of natural gas and we have to do that. gas still has carbon, so when i think about the transition, gas will get displaced with renewables and some other things but we will need gas or some other quick start technology to follow the intermittancy issues, meaning sometimes the wind doesn't blow and the sun doesn't shine, what do you do when it doesn't. nuclear will be part of the portfolio. intense, big, carbon-free, reliable. the nuclear facility we are building in georgia today will
have a gas equivalent price of about $1 per million btu. we talk about the miracle, the revolution of fracking and natural gas drilling in america that has brought gas from 13 bucks for a million btus down to three, it bounces to four, okay. nuclear will be one. it will have no emissions whatsoever. and we can manage the used fuel issues. coal will dissipate. so what goes in the middle of that, even if you use gas to follow some of the issues, you must still develop carbon capture research. so you have got to do something with the carbon atom. southern company runs the united states carbon catch and research center. we run the international carbon capture research center. even though that technology today is largely out of the money, we must find ways to improve and put it on a commercial scale. that is a big deal.
what i'm describing to you right now are the issues related to what i call the age of big iron. sounds kind of greek, doesn't it? >> sounds like stalin. >> let me show you. this is what's changing. i'm right-handed. i got to get over here. sorry, folks. i will sit down here in a sec. so this is time and here's where we are kind of today. i'm going to put that, so that line right there is today. this right here is the age of big iron. almost all of the energy that we consume as a nation today is driven by nuclear, coal, renewables, natural gas, big central station units, the economies of scale are enormous. it is so much better to have
central station solar than it is to put it on your rooftop. all right? twice as effective on the average. if we're going to move that with technology innovation, that is the reality today. right here, i'm going to use the word distributed infrastructure. most of the public gets distributed generation. oh, solar on my rooftop, got it. or a fuel cell. or something. distributed infrastructure expands the notion from just generation to the make, move and sell essentials of the centuries-old business model. that means microgrids. we bought a company in 2016 that is the largest, by far, by a magnitude largest deployer of microgrids in the united states. we have proprietary switch gear and storage technology. being able for customers to create on their own premises largely right now in the industrial and commercial space,
make, move and sell, consume, within their complete control. that is where we are today. but what's happening is my sense is the age of big iron will start to dissipate. and you'll see this technology imperative, and customer requirements in the age of the digital economy completely change the picture. central station power, the age of big iron will persist, but it will diminish. >> tom, how about the age of big grid? >> that's part of it. >> is big iron correlated with big grid and that goes down so that our notions of the survivability and resilience of the grid get -- >> here we go. when i say big iron, i mean make, generate, move, so transmit, distribute, sell, consume. depends on what side of the meter you're on. i sell, you consume. same thing. that is all the age of big iron.
but what's happening is that dissipates and something else will happen, and that is what i call distributed infrastructure. that is taking that model and putting it there. essentially, essentially micro big iron but we will make it so that you have complete control as a consumer to that very important infrastructure. notice the age of big iron never goes away. it just diminishes. as a ceo of one of the most successful companies in america, one of the largest in america, i'm right now inventing, making big-time investments, in ideas which will attack our own business model. i call that with our employees and in our industry creative destruction. look, i think this is happening. i don't know how fast that will happen. so what i'm doing is making essentially option-based
strategy investments in things like blue technologies and things in order to, if this thing starts to happen, i can influence it. i can create -- >> just real short for me, this sounds, you know, i can feel the tension in what you're trying to do. what are the things that are driving you hard on this, given this era of deregulation we're in? which is -- >> not deregulation. >> not saying -- to a certain degree, you don't have to do this stuff. you can coast on what you have been doing for awhile given our environment, right? >> that is it. if you look at business history, one of the greatest harbingers of future fail is past success. there is no imperative to innovate. look how good i am. i love drawing another one. let me draw you one more. so here is a pie chart of all the employees at southern company, and i would argue most of the people at southern
company, look at the metrics, i'm not proselytizing. they are damned good at making and selling. they are terrific. look at the operating metrics. we have the highest levels of reliability, we have the most stable fleet, we have the most whatever. highest levels of customer satisfaction. one year, fairly recently, we were number two among all companies next to fed ex. i'm from new jersey. you just don't see that there, you know? >> you don't sound like you're from new jersey. >> but what you have here, these are the revolutionaries. and these people say to these people why and why not, and what if. as successful as these people are, they want to assassinate the revolutionaries. right? get out of here. look at what i did last year. so what we're trying to do is to
essentially celebrate, to nurture, to grow the revolutionaries and the culture. one other thing. i knew about a year, i wish we had different colors, this is -- i knew about a year before i became public i was going to be ceo and chairman of south. i went the our corporate shrink and said get me out of the 125 or so officers at southern, big company, now we are 32,000 people, i said get me the top 25 innovators. we do all this, we lay on the couch and do all this stuff about psychiatric analysis, things you're good at, we build teams this way. we're really into this stuff. he sent me back this list and i went you got to be kidding me, that guy is an innovator? are you kidding? he's a revolutionary? there's no way. what people had done over the years is adapted, in order to
fit in with these people, they pulled their horns in. so what we have to do is somehow tap in and unleash, celebrate the revolutionary in us all. that's what's going to make us here. if you just play defense, you will follow that curve down, from a stockholder standpoint and everything else. i will not let that happen. we have got to play offense. what i would rather do, instead of just taking what happens is influence it. >> in our couple minutes, our time is running out, i want to give the audience a chance with you, too, i am interested in, you know, this is fascinating to see the microgrids and how you begin looking at distributed infrastructure and a real revolutionary way to look at a different dimension of infrastructure, but part of the challenges we have today are just what we have today and how we make that work, and i know we have had many conversations in the past about some of the national security vulnerabilities that we have. i just want you to give a real
short snapshot on how vulnerable our current system really is, nuclear plants, grid, to chinese, iranians, russians, and how worried you are on a scale of 1 to 10. >> so i help lead for the united states what they call an escc, electricity subsector coordinating council. homeland security segments american commerce into 16 pieces, electricity is one of them. i help lead that. i'm also central to helping put together what we now call the trifecta group which is an alliance of electricity, finance, telecom. now we are working on that. here's the thing. when we think about cyber and physical security, so i always think about those two things together. don't ever separate those. put them together. i am not particularly concerned, and i don't mean to sound cold here, that they steal your social security number.
of course i worried about that. but -- but the base of concern for me is the existential threat, the bad guys' ability to take down the grid or create a lack of confidence in the financial system, or prevent us from talking or even worse, weaponizing information. so we work together to make sure that doesn't happen. i would argue that the buzzword of the present should be and is evolving, heard a little bit of this out of the congressman. bruce walker is here. it's the notion of taking away as our primary area of focus, reliability which means how the system operates under normal conditions, to a notion of resilience, which means how does your system operate under abnormal conditions, be it hurricane sandy, tornadoes or a cyberattack. and so we are building within
the context of our infrastructure all the notions of resilience that will make us better as a nation. my confidence is high. >> in the future. >> today and in the future. now, but when i say that, if you ask me the dumb question well, is it possible, well, of course. is it likely, no. absolutely not. the grid is so big, so complex, so whatever. but let me tell you, the bad guys are after us relentlessly. we get attacked, southern -- >> give them the numbers. >> i don't want to give them the numbers. millions of times a day. okay? millions. and that's really in the idea of some guy sitting in an office building in beijing, china banging away, whether it's russia, iran, north korea or china. but when we go to the age of think about moving from, sashgs that model to the matrix, where
now machines attack machines and millions of times a day becomes trillions, then you add on to that artificial intelligence, where they learn your defense, they learn their own attack in a machine sense, and we must have artificial intelligence to rebuff the bad guys. that's the battlefield of the future except it's happening today. now, the united states, you know, i can't speak in classified terms, i have deep classified clearance, the united states' capability in this regard is fabulous and the people in the three-letter agencies, i'm always honored to call them patriots. they don't earn their value. the people in this regard in the united states are terrific and you should thank them. probably don't know who they are, though. they are terrific. >> i wanted to give you all a little dose of cynicism and optimism in the same moment here. let me go to questions and comments here in the back. in the very back.
>> thanks very much for giving us a glimpse of your corporate strategy. i was wondering, questions about it, first is, i'm talking about the distributed big iron strategy you were describing. the first is, what is to prevent your suppliers from leapfrogging you and going directly to the end user? in other words, if i'm a big customer, why do i need you as a middleman? why can't i go to the manufacturer and accomplish the same thing and secondly, who do you see as your principal competitors in the distributed big iron -- >> yeah, look, so this guy right here has thousands and thousands of vendors. when you think about who would essentially preempt, step in the middle of, disintermediate is the word, our relationship with our customer, it would be one of these big information companies but they still need the stuff. distributed infrastructure to me
is still the stuff necessary to generate electricity or to move it within your enterprise or to help you consume it in a smarter way. that is a much more complicated kind of undertaking than just having google have some important relationship inside your house. we used to think it was thermostats, nest thermostats, and the idea was your nest does the hvac in a really smart way, let's put the power inside of it to make it a server for the home and run all your smart appliances. when you think about a commercial and industrial enterprise, it is a big undertaking. my sense is if we go into om chemical, om chemical wants to be great at making chemicals. if we can take away from them the worry of clean, safe, reliable, affordable energy, they are happy to let us do it, and let them focus on chemicals. this is not something that
anybody can step into. this is a very tough, complex thing. we are the best people to do it. >> who is your biggest competitor? >> it's going to be somebody -- distributed infrastructure, we see so many people jumping in and out of this thing, i don't see a single competitor. it would be some alliance. but you see, just think johnson controls. their kind of business in this regard in the private equity, i would say. google has made an effort to get into this space but it was to control -- the idea, the theory is really interesting, the theory of how you and what you consume energy on is worth more than perhaps the energy itself. if i can understand your refrigerator is about ready to die, what's that worth to people who sell refrigerators? or if i can -- so the information has a tremendous amount of value. now, you, how much you want
public, it's a great conversation these days, of your energy patterns? do you want to sell that to anybody that will come in? how do you know what's going to be done with that? they can also estimate what your personal income is and what -- i mean, there's a tremendous wealth of information here. we believe customers own that information. that's why you have never seen us get any idea of being an information merchant. >> just as we close up, i interviewed the mayor of baltimore here this morning. we have had a lot of fascinating entrepreneurs, perspectives, people thinking about the future of infrastructure, and i sense your palpable enthusiasm here. i just want to say, when you want to talk to mayors or to the ceo of evgo, you talk to the ecosystem of infrastructure innovation out there, what do they most need to get right? >> resilience. atlanta is getting ready to host the super bowl. i'm probably, knock on wood or
whatever i can, we don't want the power to go out during the super bowl. so i can assure you, when you think about the responsibility at the end of the day of the united states, it is to protect its citizens and our way of life and our ability to enact capitalism in a fair way. energy policy is central to that. the most important thing we can do is keep the lights on. that is the most important thing. i talk to mayors and other people on the hill about. that is job one. we will work on all this other stuff but boy, the lights go out, i don't care how affordable it is. right? we have got to keep the lights on. resilience is the most important thing we can do. in this area of ever-increasing threats to our way of life by bad people, we have to make that job one. >> ladies and gentlemen, tom fanning, ceo of southern company. thank you so much, sir. >> thank you. always good to be with you.
>> i thank you to tom and steve and all of our speakers and moderators today and of course, to all of you and lastly, to our underwriter, basf, for making this morning possible. before you go, you will see little surveys on your chairs. please take a moment to fill those out. your feedback is helpful as we craft these experiences. lastly, whether you drove, walked, biked, scooted, whathave you, i hope the rest of your day is fantastic, you get safely to your next destination. have a great one. [ applause ] >> today, diplomats and defense officials discuss efforts to modernize nuclear security and arms control policy. that's at 2:00 p.m. eastern. at 6:00 p.m. eastern, a discussion with u.s. army general stephen townsend on recruiting challenges facing the u.s. army. watch both events live here on c-span 2.
>> tonight, on the communicators, we'll discuss the race between the u.s. and china to develop artificial intelligence, with chinese technology leader and former head of google china. >> i think the u.s. companies, the best of them, tend to be ph.d. driven, research driven, aiming for a.i. to be a breakthrough and looking for applications. the best of the chinese, at least the emerging chinese a.i. companies, are those looking for ways to make money and build a great product, reach the greatest number of people. either save a lot of cost or increase the margin or by increasing the clear efficiency and productivity with a.i. and robotics versus having humans do routine tasks. so i think the china approach is
practical, it's focused on immediate usage and monetization and i think those approaches are more business-driven. >> watch the communicators tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span 2. >> admiral karl schultz, commandant of the u.s. coast guard, spoke at the national press club recently about u.s. military presence in the arctic and national security. he spoke and took questions for about an hour. >> welcome to the national press club, the place where news happens. i'm andrea edney, an editor with bloomberg news, the 111th president of the national press club. befoe